Managing stress and anxiety during lockdown

During this challenging time, we are aware that those who were already struggling to cope with life after a road crash are having to face further distress and trauma by being cut off from some of their usual support networks. The pandemic may have also delayed the outcome of numerous court cases leading to additional stress and anxiety for many.

In recognition of this and thanks to our North West Local Support Group and Resilience Building Facilitators Mary Goodchild and Julie Rawlinson, we are sharing some simple deep breathing and relaxation exercises which may help to reduce some of the anxiety and stress victims may be facing during this uncertain and overwhelming time.

These exercises are used in our 10-week Resilience Building Programme and have proved to be very useful:

“The relaxation exercises helped me to stay calm during very stressful times, particularly at night when I often struggled to sleep”. Bereaved father

*Please note that we cannot guarantee that every exercise will be equally helpful for everyone*

Deep Breathing

Sometimes when we are scared or anxious, we take very quick and shallow breaths which can result in you feeling out of breath or dizzy. Deep breathing is a quick and simple technique which can help to reduce tension in our bodies and bring about a state of calm.

Relaxation Exercises

The more upset we are the more our bodies react and the more our bodies react the more upset we feel. The most effective way to break this cycle is to learn ways to relax our bodies. Relaxation exercises can prove to be very helpful in making our bodies feel less tense. We have included two different relaxation exercises.

Progressive Relaxation

This exercise focuses on physical relaxation and helps you to notice the difference between tension and relaxation. Relaxation brings about two physical sensations, heaviness, and warmth. If you experience these sensations, you know that you are relaxing.

Establishing a Safe Place

This exercise uses visualisation and require you to use your imagination to take you to a place of calm and peace.

We hope you find these useful.

Remember that RoadPeace is here to support you. Please do get in touch with us via our helpline on 0845 4500 355 or email at helpline@roadpeace.org.