Walking through 2020 is kind of like walking on a tightrope. For some, it’s a tightrope that’s 1,350 feet off the ground, over an alligator pit, and about to be set on fire. Sky high stress and uncertainty is almost a given, but how do you recognize that it’s truly overtaking your life? Well, the Coronavirus Anxiety Project and its Coronavirus Anxiety Scale might be a good place to start. Actually, the Coronavirus Anxiety Project has more than a few tools that can help you navigate this deeply unsteady year.
The Coronavirus Anxiety Scale, for example, is an assessment of physiologically-based, dysfunctional anxiety symptoms that might be associated with COVID-19 worries. The scale is translated into multiple languages and already used by different health care professionals across the globe. It also provides the Obsession With COVID-19 Scale, designating how often thoughts of coronavirus consume you. Finally, there’s the Coronavirus Reassurance-Seeking Behaviors which is a barometer for active reassurance-seeking behaviors associated with concerns over coronavirus infections. All of these can help track the prevalence of coronaphobia, on a global scale or within your own life. It takes just a minute to complete the assessment, so there’s no reason to not fill it out.
Suffice to say if you feel like you’re struggling with anxiety, you don’t want to necessarily turn to a PDF or, say, an article on the internet to diagnose and treat the problem. But we can point you in the right direction. If you’re ranking high up the COVID-19 Anxiety Scale and need help, there are many mental health resources that potentially provide a safety net through your 2020 journey.
True to their name, Inclusive Therapist wants to match you to someone who can speak to your identity, encompassing all identities. That’s really important considering how therapy is so colonialized (as of 2015 approximately 86 percent of psychologists were white) and simply finding someone to understand you can be stressful. Inclusive Therapists works to fix that issue.
This is a seriously accessible psychotherapy collective that offers sessions in the $30 to $80 range. You can narrow down your therapist search through a portal, and even toggle based on identity or speciality, whoever you think would best resonate with you. This is a really valid option if you’ve always wanted to start therapy, but the prices have been oppressively high (which, as a New Yorker, I feel that struggle on a soul level).
Shine is a wonderful resource when it comes to making self-care a pretty effortless part of your routine. Five days a week, Shine sends you an uplifting message with research-backed strategies to help you reduce stress, raise your self-esteem, and become someone who really feels more in control. And they specifically have a Care for Your Coronavirus section, too, as well as…
This is run by Shine, but it’s an entirely separate toolkit that’s designated to pacify whatever COVID-related concerns you may have. I’m actually astounded by how well set up this is: the Care for Your Coronavirus Anxiety page has an Ask an Expert page and a well of free meditations to ground you when your concerns can be overwhelming. Bookmark this site the next time you find yourself doomscrolling down a bad news vortex.