The impact of the COVID-19 on Individuals and Communities has taken its toll.

The COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak has the potential to increase stress and anxiety, both because of the fear of catching the virus and because of uncertainty about how the outbreak will affect all us socially and economically. 

The pandemic is presenting every level of the U.S. economy with an unprecedented challenge, and the government must mount a sustained and ambitious economic response lasting months and perhaps years.

The recovery program likely will cost trillions of dollars, on top of the relief measures already approved by Congress and President Trump. Aggressive investment and well-designed policy measures could bring the economy back faster and with less long-term distress for workers and businesses. And the nation can afford the investment.

Coping with the Stress of COVID-19

When dealing with the stress and anxiety caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, improving your health, quality of life, and wellbeing is the way to go. But it sometimes is a Catch-22 situation, unfortunately: The things that can help the most are the things that are also the most difficult to do at times.

Yet, there is a big difference between what’s difficult and what’s impossible. While controlling anxiety isn’t quick or easy, you do have more control than you realize; even if your anxiety is severe and stubbornly persistent. The key to success is to start small and build from there, just one brick at a time. You may not have much energy, but by counting on all your reserves, you should have enough energy to take a walk around the block or pick up the phone to call a loved one, for example.

Take care of yourself, your community, your friends, and your family; it can help you cope with stress. Assisting others also creates positive ripples.

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Also, make it a point to not constantly read about the pandemic. Although it is important to be staying informed, hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting. 

Make a schedule and stick to it. Get up and dressed. The first step to getting a good routine in place is to determine your wake-up time, bedtime, and mealtimes. These are not set-in-stone times, but if you have a general guideline to follow, it helps bring order and structure to your days.

Read and write. One of the most effective ways of dealing with stress is journaling: Write in detail your feelings and thoughts related to the stressful events — as one would discuss topics in therapy — and brainstorm solutions. There are several different ways to practice journaling. The method you choose depends on your needs and your personality; do what feels right.

Clean, organize, and handcraft (although this is easier said than done if you have little monsters that destroy every room in the house.) YouTube has endless amounts of video tutorials to help you. My lady personally loves Pinterest, and my honey-do list is just getting longer.

Exercise. There is online free yoga and you can find CrossFit videos everywhere. Some “boxes” have gone online with their members, however, there are many videos out there that are free. Check out these: fitness blender, PopSugar fitness, seven fitness, pear fitness, and headspace.

Play games — if they don’t involve a screen even better. And don’t forget about all those games that are building dust in your closet: cards, monopoly, scrabble, memory, puzzle. 

Make, create, and organize picture memories. PhotoBox, Mixbook can help you with that and you can use squared or lalalab to print them. 

Catch up on your favorite shows. Tiger King has a 97 percent critic’s rating and a 96 percent audience score — putting it at the top of the site’s most popular shows list, ahead of Netflix’s “Ozark.” You can’t help but watch the train wreck.

You can also make money while not working at your regular job. Delivery has taken off. DoorDash, a delivery app, lets you be your boss and set your schedule. You get to keep 100 percent of the delivery fee plus any tips or boosts. Dashers earn an average of $15-25 an hour.

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Learn a new language. DUO and Babbel are some good programs to help you do so.

The modern workforce is adapting fast and you don’t need a degree for everything. Some colleges are offering free classes, and it could be worth the effort to look at them.

Learn to cook. The Food Network is free for the first 30 days.

And as importantly, STAY OFF YOUR PHONE AS MUCH AS POSSIBLE!

Remember, you are not alone. Reach out for help; we are in this together.