How To Reduce 'Re-Entry Anxiety'

A new type of anxiety is beginning to surface in people.


It was hard to imagine that just over a year ago, we were heading into lockdown. As the year has gone on, we’ve heard about the potential effects of lockdown on the mental health of children and adults. Being unable to carry on with our daily lives and see friends and family was causing stress, anxiety, and depression. Everyone wanted to get back to their normal lives. 

Fast forward a year. As we’re on the brink of a more normal life, a new type of anxiety is beginning to surface in people. It’s been labeled as Re-Entry Anxiety. It’s more common than you might think and it’s becoming even more so as we move towards the lifting of restrictions. 

As a society, we’ve been subjected to an acutely stressful situation for a prolonged period of time, and just as with any big life change, it can bring fear. 

If you think that you may be developing anxiety about your post-lockdown life, then here are some tips on making it less stressful. 

How To Reduce 'Re-Entry Anxiety'

Don’t Jump In With Both Feet

Lockdown happened fast, but jumping back into your old life at full speed might not be the best idea. Ease back into things. Avoid crowds or particularly busy areas. See only a few people at a time until you are comfortable. 

If you are feeling particularly reluctant to get back into your life, arrange an appointment with an online GP or therapist who will be able to help you. 

Don’t Wait Too Long

Prolonged isolation isn’t good for anyone, so don’t hide away for longer than you have to, it will only compound your anxiety and make it even more difficult to get your mental health back on track. 

Put Things In Perspective

Feeling overwhelmed is common. It’s easy to feel that there’s too much to consider. So try making things more manageable by narrowing down your focus to a certain area. You could choose to concentrate on seeing a particular family member or friend, or visiting your favorite outdoor spot. 

How To Reduce 'Re-Entry Anxiety'

Don’t Do It Alone

The chances are, you aren’t the only one in your friends or family group who is having these feelings. If this is the case, partner, up with someone else so that you can support each other and start doing activities together in a safe space. 

Reach Out For Help

There’s no right way to feel about what’s gone on over the last year. Some people have coped extremely well and others haven’t. The same can be said of re-entry anxiety. You might be envious of those people who practically summersault out of their doors, attending social event after social event, but there are many people who have some anxiety. 

Reaching out for help is important if you feel like you can’t cope. Talk to a professional mental health practitioner or a friend or relative that you trust. Even just being able to say it out loud and verbalize your fears can be the first step to overcoming them.