We know that the news these days might be stressful and anxiety provoking.

While stress isn’t always a bad thing, it can sometimes reach an unhealthy level that interferes with our work, school, relationships, and even ability to enjoy life. If that’s the case, it’s time to take action.

Remember to take care of yourself and those around you, and to be on the lookout for signs of distress including: 

  • Not sleeping enough or sleeping too much
  • Loss of appetite or eating too much
  • Experiencing more headaches, muscle aches/tightness, more frequent colds and minor illnesses
  • Needing to take deep breaths and feeling slightly light-headed when you think about everything you need to get done or about a situation you can’t control
  • Frequently irritable, frustrated, angry, impatient and/or anxious
  • Difficulty concentrating and therefore not able to get things done as effectively or as easily as usual
  • Feeling overwhelming stress and pressure for more than a few days

Here are some things you can do to help manage your own stress and care for others:

Self Care:

It’s always important to prioritize your emotional health and well-being. Remember to take time for yourself. Make sure to get enough exercise, nutrition, and sleep. Try to keep things in perspective. If you’re feeling stressed, try some of these Press Pause techniques:

Caring for Others:

During this stressful time, be on the lookout for others. In caring for a friend or loved one, here’s what you can do:

1. Let them know you are concerned: 
Tell them what you have noticed and why it worries you. Suggestions on how you can start this conversation include:

  • “I’m worried about you because you seem…” (e.g., really stressed, tense, worried all of the time, etc.)
  • “It concerned me when you said…” and be specific about what you heard
  • “Do you want to talk about it?”; “What can I do to help?”

2. Listen (really, listen):

  • Try to avoid judgment or jumping to conclusions
  • Be there for them – sometimes just knowing that someone cares and is there for them is all someone needs to get through a difficult time
  • Let them know that it is possible to feel better

3. Don’t feel like you have to have all of the answers:

  • Help them out with things that might relieve their anxiety
  • Offer to go to a yoga class together or take a walk together
  • Find a relaxation/meditation app that you like and share it with your friend
  • If it’s too much for you to handle, offer to help connect them with professional help

Learn more at jedfoundation.org/help.

Finally, we’re excited to share some good news for mental health and suicide prevention from Washington:

On Friday, September 28, President Trump signed the FY19 Labor HHS and Education Appropriations Bill, which includes a $4.8M increase in funding for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK), increased funding to National Strategy for Suicide Prevention Grants, specifically grants for American Indian/Alaskan Native suicide prevention efforts, and increased funding to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) for research. Learn more from our partners at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Get Help Now

If you or someone you know needs to talk to someone right now, text, call, or chat 988 for a free confidential conversation with a trained counselor 24/7. 

You can also contact the Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741-741.

If this is a medical emergency or if there is immediate danger of harm, call 911 and explain that you need support for a mental health crisis.