Quick Mindfulness Exercise
Reduce stress & restore emotional balance using your 5 senses in a few minutes or less.
Sit outdoors or facing a window. Get comfortable. Close your eyes. Focus on your breathing until you feel more calm. Open your eyes. Then…
- Notice 5 things you can SEE
- Notice 4 things you can HEAR
- Notice 3 things you can FEEL
- Notice 2 things you can SMELL
- Notice 1 thing you can TASTE
Common COVID/Quarantine Stressors for LGBTQIA People
- Feelings of uncertainty and hopelessness that lead to sadness or depression
- Worrying about health and safety of self and loves ones
- Quarantining in homophobic or transphobic places
- Racism and anti-blackness
- Limited access to resources and financial insecurity
- Unmet transition care and support
- Little to no access to LGBTQIA community
Ways to Combat Stress
Focus on Things you CAN Control
- Finding fun things to do at home
- Limiting social media / news
- Following CDC Recommendations
- Everyday Self Care - Sleep, Eat, Shower, Take Meds, etc.
- Holding Space for Others / Allyship
- Reaching out to other LGBTQIA folks
Things OUTSIDE of your Control
- How others react
- The actions of others
- How long this will last
- If others follow the rules of social distancing
- Predicting what will happen
- Other people’s motives
ABCD Technique for Managing Anxiety/Stress
Adversity or Activating Event
Identify the adversity or stressor. Might be more than 1 thing. If multiple, choose one.
What is your belief (internal narrative) about the adversity? Thoughts may be irrational.
Identify the consequences of believing that belief/narrative (i.e. heart racing, isolation, sadness, etc.)
- Dispute that narrative. Argue the logic of the negative belief. If possible, others can help you dispute it too. Our friends oftentimes help us with overly-negative self-narratives.
- Distract. Sometimes the adversity we face is indisputable or traumatic. In this case, sometimes a Distraction (i.e. a self-care strategy) can be best to help you get back to a more positive emotional balance.
- After disputing/distracting, see if you can recognize a change in your C (consequences) and what you are feeling.
COVID Self Care Strategies for Physical, Mental, Social, Spiritual, & Professional Well-Being
- Eat balanced meals throughout the day
- Get outside to stay active or try virtual workouts
- Maintain a sleep schedule
- Take breaks from news and social media
- Talk it out instead of just texting
- Find sources of queer inspiration each week
- Practice mindfulness and meditation
- Speak/Journal at least 1 affirmation for your identity/sexuality daily
- Tap into gratitude. Try 3 Good Things per day
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Finding Community While Physical Distancing
- Virtual community - There are various opportunities such as webinars for free, church services, queer and trans dance parties, virtual cookouts, etc. Instagram and Twitter are wonderful places to start to look for community opportunities. Additionally, a few organizations include the HRC, Southern Fried Queer Pride, and Charis Book & more.
- Form a virtual book/movie/music club - The TV Shows, Movies, Books and Music to Get You Through Quarantine, According to TIME 100 Leaders
- Participate in service - How one Millennial is finding purpose and connection in a pandemic
- Zoom calls with family (chosen and otherwise)
- Online trivia
- Georgia Tech programming through the LGBTQIA Resource Center and Health Initiatives!