By Khali Henderson
Zombies? Vampires? Ghosts? All of these can be scary, but they’re probably not what’s keeping you up at night now on the eve of Halloween 2020.
You’ve got other frightening things on your mind: rising COVID cases, threat of fire or hurricane, the outcome of a contentious election, social protests, job losses, return to the office, etc. Take your pick; there’s no shortage at the moment.
If you’re feeling anxious about any or all of these things, that’s OK. Most of us are. And, it’s a natural response to stress. Anxiety can help us to come up with solutions to problems. Anxiety unchecked (a.k.a. panic), however, is not helpful.*
In times of crisis, take a deep breath and develop a plan. Answer these questions:
- What do you actually know?
- What can you do right now?
- What could happen next?
- What can you do differently?
This exercise exposes the fact that much of what’s going on is outside your ability to fix. However, there are things you can do to control your response.
For example, unless you’re creating the COVID vaccine, your best course of action to mitigate the threat of the virus is to limit exposure by wearing a mask or sheltering in place. Similarly, if you’re concerned about who will win the upcoming election, be sure to vote.
Often, the simple act of doing “something” can help to allay your fears. Here are a few other tips for things to do from the Calm app (which is also a great tool for calming anxiety, btw):
- Reimagine fear
- Jump in
- Turn obstacles into opportunities
- Form a support system
On the last point, remember that your ACW family always has your back! Reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’re happy to help!
*If you’re feeling panicked or depressed, you’re not alone. Literally, experts are warning of spikes in cases. Please contact a health professional or text CONNECT to the Crisis Text Line at 741741.
About the Author
Khali Henderson is senior partner at BuzzTheory, a marketing services firm specializing in helping high-tech companies with to-channel and through-channel marketing. Forrester named BuzzTheory one of the Top 13 Channel PR firms globally and Henderson as one of the Top 5 most recommended. Henderson is a member of the Forbes Agency Council, an Advisory Board member of Mission Sisters Who Work, a board member for Cloud Girls, and a former board member and Communications Committee chair for Alliance of Channel Women. She is the recipient of the 2018 ACW ACT Award for outstanding volunteerism.