The wondrous world of coping skills, made a little simpler.

I don’t know about you, but if I have to hear the word “unprecedented” one more time, I might actually lose it.

Sure, it’s not inaccurate. During a global pandemic, we’re facing challenges that are… well… pretty new.

And yes, the mental health toll of all of this uncertainty and fear is very understandable. This is a time when our emotional reserves are low, our anxiety is high, and our brains are a little scrambled.

But hearing the same platitudes over and over again can start to get a little grating, especially when you need support and you don’t know where to find it.

Maybe it’s your first (or hundreth) panic attack. Maybe it’s inexplicable exhaustion that you can’t seem to sleep away. Maybe you’re spiraling, unable to discern if you need to go to urgent care for COVID-19 or call up a psychiatrist for some anti-anxiety meds.

If you’re feeling maxed out or even a little cuckoo-for-Cocoa-Puffs (#notanad), you’re not alone — and there are resources that can support you, no matter what you’re up against.

So take a deep breath, hang tight, and let’s explore your options.

Being human was hard enough before a pandemic. It makes a lot of sense that so many of us are struggling right now. The silver lining? You don’t have to go through this alone.

Hey, before we get into it… are you having suicidal thoughts? Like maybe there’s no point in sticking around, or that you wish you didn’t have to struggle anymore? I ask because there are folks out there who want to support you.

Click here to view a full list of suicide prevention resources.

I’d also encourage you to read this essay about being suicidal but too afraid to die (from someone who’s been there!).

Support can look a lot of different ways!

Here are some additional options:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


“Me? Depressed?” If I had a nickel for every time I’ve said this, I could afford my own pandemic-proof bunker by now.

A quick refresher: Depression can look like intolerable boredom, a loss of pleasure or enjoyment, overwhelming sadness, struggling to “bounce back” from setbacks, or even emotional numbness.

When you’re in it, it’s not always easy to recognize, and it can show up a little differently for everyone.

If you haven’t really felt like yourself lately, here are some resources to explore:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Anxious? Welcome to the club. It’s not exactly a fun club, but at least with physical distancing, you no longer have to worry about people noticing your sweaty palms when they go in for our Official Club Handshake.

(Pro-tip: If you don’t see what you’re looking for here, you can also check out our resources on health anxiety and panic attacks!)

Some COVID-specific resources:

Coping tools for the long haul:

Just breathe!

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Not-so-fun fact: Anxiety can trigger a fight-or-flight reaction with physical symptoms!

If you’re wondering if you’re sick or just worried sick, these resources can help:

Still think you might have it? Here’s what to do next if you suspect you have COVID-19.

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


In my article on anticipatory grief, I wrote, “A mourning process can occur even when we sense that a loss is going to happen, but we don’t know exactly what it is yet.” This can show up as exhaustion, agitation, hypervigilance, a sense of being “on edge,” and more.

If you’re feeling drained or wound up (or both!), it might be worthwhile to explore these resources:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Or don’t, you know? It’s a freaking pandemic, so yes, your concentration is going to be impacted. Radically accepting that we’re not firing at full capacity — and that, yes, that’s okay — can be incredibly helpful.

That said, it’s never a bad time to explore some new coping skills for concentration.

Check these out:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Sleep is a critical part of our well-being (I probably sound like a broken record at this point, but it’s true!).

If you’re struggling to fall asleep or stay asleep, check out these tips and remedies:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Whether you’re a panic attack veteran or a newbie to the wondrous world of capital-P Panic, welcome! (Be sure to check out our section on anxiety, too, if you need more support!)

These resources are just for you:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Isolation is tough regardless, but it can be especially hard for people who have relied on substances to cope with anxiety and stress.

For some of us, this means our sobriety will be difficult to maintain. For others, we may become more aware of our problematic relationship to substances for the very first time.

Wherever you’re at in your journey with substances, these reads are designed to help you navigate these challenges:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


With an uptick of social media posts lamenting weight gain in self-quarantine, there’s a lot of pressure to change our bodies and diets — despite the fact that our weight should be the least of our concerns right now!

Your body is your ally in survival, not your enemy. Here are some resources to consider if you’re struggling right now.

A common sense proposal? Ditch the diet (yes, really):

You may also want to consider reading “The F*ck It Diet” by Caroline Dooner, which is a great intro to intuitive eating (snag a copy here!).

For folks with eating disorders:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Human connection is such an important part of keeping ourselves steady during times of crisis. That’s part of what makes sheltering-in-place such a challenge right now.

If you’re having a hard time with it, don’t panic! Check out the resources below for some extra support (and if you’re craving some physical touch, check out these resources, too!)

If you’re struggling with loneliness:

When working from home:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Have you heard of something called “skin hunger”? Human beings often crave physical touch, and it’s part of what helps us emotionally regulate and destress.

If you’re needing human touch right now, you’re not the only one.

Here are some workarounds worth checking out:

Some sexuality-specific resources here:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


That’s not exactly news though, is it? In a lot of ways, this outbreak isn’t exactly a new set of challenges, so much as a slightly different set.

With that in mind, I’ve compiled some relevant reads that can help support you during this time.

Especially for you:

For folks who just don’t get it:

Didn’t find what you were looking for? Let’s check in again!


Sam Dylan Finch is an editor, writer, and digital media strategist in the San Francisco Bay Area. He’s the lead editor of mental health & chronic conditions at Healthline. Find him on Twitter and Instagram, and learn more at SamDylanFinch.com.