8 Things You Can Do If You Feel Helpless During The Coronavirus Pandemic

Kelsey Borresen

The coronavirus pandemic has turned our world upside-down, leaving people lost, scared, overwhelmed and — at times — defeated. 

Feeling helpless right now is totally normal. As humans, we like to think we have power over our lives. When we’re robbed of that, it can be unsettling.

“When we lose control over any significant aspect of our lives, as is happening right now, it is natural to want to find opportunities to exert control over something else,” Utpal Dholakia, professor of marketing at Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business, told HuffPost. “Doing so makes us feel less helpless.” 

While it’s easy to get hung up on the things you can’t change right now, try to focus on the small ways you can make a difference in your community and beyond. Below, eight things you can do if you’re feeling helpless during the COVID-19 outbreak. 

1. Stay home and encourage your loved ones to do the same 

Hopefully, you’ve already been doing this in accordance with the government guidelines, but digging into the “why” may shift your perspective. 

“The smallest action that can make the biggest impact for the greater good is to stay home,” said clinical psychologist Aarti Gupta, founder and clinical director of TherapyNest. “Self-quarantine can feel isolating, but reframing it as social solidarity can be a reminder that everyone else is making the same sacrifice at this time.” 

Committing to other health practices like washing your hands thoroughly and frequently, not touching your face, limiting or avoiding use of public transportation and eating nourishing, immune-boosting foods can help, too.

If you have loved ones who refuse to follow proper social distancing protocols, express your concerns in a nonjudgmental way (hard, we know!). Come prepared with facts that might help them reconsider their behavior. 

“Talk to your friends and family who are not practicing social distancing and help them see why it is...

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