You don’t have to have been in the midst of a disaster to be emotionally affected by it.
Think of what you felt like after the 9/11 attacks on our country. You may have had trouble sleeping or eating for a while. Maybe you found yourself having difficulty concentrating or were anxious. If so, you were joined by millions of others who experienced the same signs and symptoms of stress. This is a normal reaction when one has been exposed to an event that causes an unusually strong emotional reaction. It may occur immediately or it may take a while before it shows up. Either way, it’s important to recognize the signs and symptoms and do something about it.
Professional assistance may be necessary in the aftermath of a particularly painful experience.
Seek it. It will make the road to recovery go more smoothly.
Following are some simple steps you can take to minimize stress:
- Limit media exposure. It’s one thing to gather information. It’s another thing to watch variations of the same horrible thing repeat itself again and again.
- Talk about what’s bothering you. Keep talking until you don’t need to talk about it anymore.
- Re-establish your normal routines.
- Take a walk, listen to your favorite music, exercise.
- Get some rest.
- Be gentle with yourself and others.
Helpful web site: International Critical Incident Stress Foundation – www.icisf.org