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Tips for taking care of ourselves, others during stressful times
Published: 12/4/2020
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“We’re all in this together.” “You are not alone.” Those two statements have been said a lot over the last nine months - and many of us might have grown tired of hearing them - but we shouldn’t just dismiss their power.

This has been an extremely destabilizing time for all of us, and without the help of someone else or giving of ourselves to help others it becomes even harder.

It’s why Dr. David Yanga, Chief Medical Officer of Ascension Brighton Center for Recovery, said managing our stress and anxiety during these times is vital.

“We must be intentional and mindful about connecting with those people we care about,” he said, defining mindfulness as wherever you are at be all there.

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought on various anxieties, and as we head into the winter months and holidays it may only get tougher for some people. Managing stress is not one size fits all, but many of us do tend to subject ourselves to incoming stressors. We need to ask ourselves how can we turn off some of the media and social media that is anxiety producing, how can we get outside and connect with nature, how can I get good sleep or how can I eat better?

We must take time for ourselves, Dr. Yanga said, and if we need someone to help us along the way that is OK, too. Ascension Providence has a full spectrum of services across its network to help people in a variety of ways. But first, we must breakdown the stigma that getting help is a sign of weakness.

“We are comfortable with the idea you can fall and break your arm and you go to a doctor and get a cast and it can heal,” he said. “But many people are uncomfortable with the idea our brain can break. That’s inappropriate because it’s an organ and just like any organ it can malfunction.

"In that state it needs connection, care, concern and actual treatment.”

Ultimately, it goes back to that feeling of being alone and no one is struggling but them. However, that could not be farther from the truth. “If someone needs help, we are here to help. It doesn’t have to be something weird. There are health care professionals who see patients who are hurting and want to help them,” Dr. Yanga said.

We are especially fortunate here in Novi to have Ascension Providence Hospital, Novi Campus, and its abundance of resources nearby. You can also help yourself in two very important ways by simply moving your body and improving your diet. Getting more vitamin C & D can have a huge effect on your health both mentally and physically, and exercise as simple as going for a walk in the neighborhood can improve your mood.

So as the holidays approach and the winter chill sets in, let’s not forget what truly matters – connecting with one another. We are all going through this together and we will all get through this together. Don’t delay your care. Find a doctor or schedule an appointment at

Ways to make holidays special
  • Prioritize the traditions that matter most to you
  • Do you gift shopping & shipping early
  • Make special memories
  • Find ways to make the most of your time with loved ones
  • Spread some joy to others
  • Remember what is different may make this holiday more special