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Spotlight on Wellness: Tips on Coping After a Crisis

From ODA's Counseling Department
From ODA's Counseling Department
Taking care of yourself is important so that you can take care of your family. Living through the experience of a hurricane or natural disaster is stressful, nerve wracking, and exhausting. As you begin to settle back into your lives and routines, you and your family may continue to experience stress reactions–which are natural–over the next few days and weeks. This will change over time. You may find feelings of fatigue, exhaustion, and a low tolerance for stress. In the wake of Hurricane Ian, your children are also watching, listening, feeling, and processing what has occurred, and it isn’t always easy to know how to respond or what to do. Self-care can help you instill the calmness and focus you need to help you handle problems and manage this stress. Self-care is taking care of our bodies, our hearts, and our minds. It is important for our own recovery and also important to be modeling for our children. 

Self-care strategies after a natural disaster:
  • Take care of your body. Eat healthy foods, stay hydrated, exercise gently, rest, and get plenty of sleep.
  • Connect with others. Maintain healthy relationships with friends, family, and coworkers.
  • Stay informed with what you need to know, while minimizing repeated exposure to news (including social media), pictures, and videos of the aftermath.
  • Take small breaks. Take a quick walk, stop and take 10 deep breaths, listen to a favorite song or short podcast, or take time for a creative or artistic outlet.
  • Recognize and acknowledge your feelings and reactions; allow yourself time for support.
  • Get help when you need it. If your reactions are impacting your daily life for several weeks, reach out to a counselor for additional support.
Below you will find three helpful resources as you continue to navigate these physical, emotional, and behavioral reactions so that you can continue to be gentle and kind to yourself while supporting your children. The ODA Counseling Department is available and will continue to provide support to you and your family. Please reach out to your division level counselor if we can be of any assistance. We are keeping you close at heart and wishing you peace and restoration as you recover from Hurricane Ian.
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