Tips for for Managing Anxiety During COVID-19 from Vision Pursue’s Russ Rausch

Whenever you navigate uncertainty and change, it’s important to be able to process your emotions. That can be easier said than done without the tools to do it. My friend Russ Rausch at Vision Pursue shares some tips for managing your anxiety and maintaining some sense of normalcy during this time.

Adapted from Russ Rausch, founder of Vision Pursue

Expect the Expected: The landscape is changing and our expectations need to keep up. Here’s what we can expect in the short term:

  • Concern about our loved ones, colleagues, and ourselves.
  • Disruption in work schedules, business operations, revenue, and cash flow.
  • Disruption of the lives of our loved ones that will impact us.
  • Volatility in the stock market and economy and financial pressure on us and our extended family.
  • Difficulty in getting certain goods and services and concerns about shortages.
  • Uncertainty about what’s going to happen.
  • Emotions of anxiety in ourselves, our families, colleagues, customers, and many of the people around us.

While this isn’t pleasant, these are realistic expectations for most of us. However, we can also expect that this will all work out. We’ll get through this and be stronger.

SEE: Apply the SEE framework to your emotions:

Separate: Emotions are a signal. When you feel emotions, know that it’s your brain projecting chemicals to give you a message.

Embrace: Your brain is alerting you to the possible impact on the well-being of your loved ones and your financial situation. Thank your brain, while knowing it’s a temporary message. It’s okay to feel however you’re feeling.

Evaluate: Determine how to play this hand the best you can.

  • What can you do to keep you and your family safe without overdoing it?
  • What adjustments can you make on spending?
  • How can you reassure your teams and clients?
  • How can you change work habits and operations to be effective?
  • How can you bring comfort to your friends and family?

SEE doesn’t stop your emotions. However, the three steps should calm your emotions or at least allow you to access your thinking mind to make better decisions.

In sports, we call this “playing nervous.” You can’t eliminate your nerves. So instead of trying to stop them, switch to knowing you can operate while they’re there. Execute what you need to do regardless of your emotional state.

Control the Controllable: You can’t control the virus, the government’s response, the market, or how people are responding around you. When helping others, remember that telling people they’re over-reacting is not an effective strategy. Instead, try validating their feelings and then gently turn them towards the controllable and realistic longer-term expectations that we’ll be okay.

Your Game Changer Takeaway

We are all challenged right now, but we have a choice in how we respond. Learning to process our emotions in a healthy way is critical to our wellbeing. Find ways to support each other, and remember—we’re all in this together!

The Molly Fletcher Company inspires leaders, teams and organizations to kick-start growth. A keynote speaker and author, Molly draws on her decades of experiences working as a sports agent. Her company’s Game Changer Negotiation Training workshops teach business people the framework for successful negotiating, so that you can close more deals while building stronger relationships. Sign up here to receive our weekly newsletter and subscribe to the Game Changers with Molly Fletcher podcast on iTunes.