As Arizonans Return to the Office Tips for Reducing Anxiety / Public News Service

Via Peters

As COVID cases decline, many Arizonans are headed back into the office for the first time in more than a year, which can cause serious anxiety.

Therapists teach mindfulness techniques to help people recognize their stressors and deal with them.

Dr. Nika Gueci, executive director of the Center for Mindfulness, Compassion and Resilience at Arizona State University in Phoenix, offered suggestions to cope with anxiety.

“So give yourself permission to feel what you’re feeling without judging,” Gueci advised. “And then figure out steps that you can take; your own personal tool kit to how you can fill yourself back up whenever you’re depleted.”

If you’re feeling anxious, Gueci recommended taking three deep breaths, unclench your jaw, and drop your shoulders. Long term, you can work on eating better, exercising and getting enough sleep. And she pointed out blaming yourself for feeling uneasy only compounds the suffering.

Dr. Nicole Brady, chief medical officer for United HealthCare employer and individual for Wisconsin and Michigan, said the disruption of our routines is the biggest stress trigger when returning to the office.

“Packing a lunch ahead of time, knowing how we’re going to get kids to and from activities,” Brady emphasized. “But stepping back and doing some advance planning can really alleviate some of that return-to-the-office stress.”

She added mindfulness and relaxation apps can be very helpful in reducing anxiety.

Disclosure: United Healthcare contributes to our fund for reporting on Health Issues. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

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