Forgetful, a short fuse and faster emotional: the corona crisis has exhausted us. We have to recover from that, says stress expert Carolien Hamming. "Be critical of what you do. Are you concerned about the safety of your vacation address? Maybe you should stay home then."
Many people don't understand why they got so tired, suspect Hamming, director of the CSR Center for Stress and Burnout Coaching. "You quickly think: that news about corona, how bad is that? But every day corona news makes you consciously more alert. You feel less safe. Do I have work next week? Are my parents doing well? Because of those mental concerns physical processes will also work a little harder. That is a bit of stress, but then for a long time. "
“Choose moderate exercise. Get a breath of fresh air and try to enjoy it. ” Carolien Hamming, stress expert
Stress helps you focus
In principle, stress is not wrong, Hamming emphasizes. "Stress provides energy, it makes you more active. Your heart rate goes up, your blood sugar rises and you can focus better. You need that increased activation to deliver a performance."
There is nothing wrong with that, but a stressful period requires extra energy. And you have to recover extra from that. Your body has to go all the way back to the basic values, so that you wake up rested in the morning and feel fit. There is a taboo on this, Hamming knows. "Many people think that recovering from stress is mainly psychological." If you keep your strength strong enough, you will be fine. "
It's not like that, Hamming says. It is also physical. "If you structurally do not recover enough, your body will adapt to the overactivity and you will end up in a negative spiral. Your heart rate will stay a little higher, your muscles will stay tense and your breathing will become less relaxed. This will make you increasingly tired and you can get stressed. "
“We need to have a house, a nice car and a holiday - preferably twice a year. But from whom actually? ” Paul Smeets, economist
How do you recover from corona stress? The easiest way to recover well is to sleep more, says the stress expert. "Go to bed on time, put your phone away and don't set an alarm." What also works: take a walk every day. "Choose moderate exercise. Get a breath of fresh air and try to enjoy it." Boost your fitness? Not a good idea, Hamming thinks. "Intensive exercise also includes intensive recovery. This is not useful if you already have a recovery delay."
Prefer time than a Ferrari
Also important: do what you like. "Often we do things unconsciously for the shape, because we think we have to or because we think it should be. But actually we don't feel like it. If you are already tired and you keep doing things on your gums, that delivers more stress. "
We are not happy about that, says economist Paul Smeets of Maastricht University. He researched the experience of happiness in relation to prosperity. "We have to have a house, a nice car and go on holiday - preferably twice a year. But from whom actually? If you buy a new car, that's great the first month. The second one too, but after that I'm used to it And if you're in a traffic jam with a Ferrari, that's still annoying. "
According to Smeets, happiness is not so much in material things, but in what you do. "Do you want to be happier? Do something active. Take a walk, volunteer, or meet friends." Not going on vacation this summer? Then you may have money to 'buy time'. Do you hate gardening? Hire a gardener. Ironing makes you unhappy? Choose an ironing service. This takes away stress and provides free time. "
Going on vacation can also contribute to recovery, Hamming thinks. "Provided you feel safe, because of course the world has changed a bit. Are you afraid of a lockdown? Then a long journey probably does you less well than you had hoped. Ask yourself: what's good for me? We often think that we have to go on holiday, but we can also stay at home. "