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Managing Anxiety & Returning to Social Situations

woman in face mask putting out open sign on front door

Spring has sprung, and many are excited for the opportunity that the warmer weather provides to safely come together as COVID-19 restrictions begin to ease.  But, for individuals who enjoyed this time of isolation, re-engaging in social situations can create anxiety. Remaining in isolation, however, isn’t the answer. Now is the time to plan ahead so that you can be confident in returning to social situations.

Plan Ahead
Instead of avoiding situations that may give you anxiety, plan ahead so you know what to expect. Try to identify what is making you nervous. Often, it is the unexpected that can create anxiety. If you aren’t sure what to expect when visiting a business, attending a social gathering, or participating in an outdoor event, call ahead and ask about safety protocols.

Take It Slow
We can’t expect to immediately get back to the same social situations we experienced prior to the pandemic. Give yourself grace and commit to starting small. Easing into social situations will help you gain confidence.

Manage Your Stress
In situations that raise levels of anxiety, such as entering a new business, use general stress management practices. Each person is different, and stress manifests in different ways, so it’s important to find a strategy that works for you.

Don’t put your health at risk because of post-lockdown anxiety. For more information and resources, visit www.PennFoundation.org.