Super Typhoon Rolly wreaked havoc in the Bicol region and nearby provinces last week. Inquirer reported that according to the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), the typhoon was by far the strongest this year.
Disasters like typhoons can have a lasting impact on people’s lives. It can serve as a lesson to better prepare people for the next calamities or it can cause traumas and anxieties among those who were severely affected. It can take a heavy toll on people’s physical, mental, emotional, and even spiritual health.
So, how do you cope with disastrous events such as super typhoons?
Here are 6 things you can do to help yourself and your family overcome catastrophic events.
1. Take care of yourself
It may be hard to start at first but taking care of yourself is an important part of coping with disasters. Make sure you continue with your normal routines such as eating healthy, getting enough sleep and exercising regularly. Verywell Mind says that practicing self-care will help you cope better physically, mentally, and emotionally.
2. Limit sources of stress
One of the helpful steps you can do following a disaster is to stay away from sources that add stress.
This could mean lessening your exposure to visual pictures of this event. It is wise to be informed but it is also wise to prevent yourself or others, especially children, from anything that may add feelings of fear and anxiety brought by this natural disaster.
3. Talk about it
Voicing out your feelings to your family on how this event has affected you can help alleviate stress. It can comfort you knowing that others share the same sentiments, too.
Verywell Mind also explains that early intervention, resources, and support from others can be a major factor in helping people overcome the negative impact of a catastrophic event. Reaching out to people can make a huge difference.
4. Get professional help for mental and emotional distress
Are you extremely disturbed about the recent disaster?
If you feel that this event has caused you post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a type of trauma that resulted from natural disasters, do not be afraid to seek professional help from psychiatrists, psychologists, or counselors. Treatments can range from series of psychological therapies to medication that would help you go through this very challenging season.
5. Find ways to help others
You may be on the other side of the boat who just witnessed a member of your family or a friend go through a tough time during a disaster. One way you can lessen their burden is to reach out and extend a helping hand.
In the article Are We Biologically Wired to Help Others During Crisis?, Psychology Today stated that according to research, a particular part of the brain is activated when people donate to causes they care about. Helping others can give you a sense of purpose, that even in bad situations, you can make a positive impact in the lives of people.
If you have the resources, you can partner with the Operation Blessing Foundation Philippines and lend a helping hand to those who were also severely affected by the typhoon.
6. Pray for your family and community
One of the best ways to rise above this disastrous event is to look out for each other, pray for one another, and lean on God as your source of hope and strength.
Matthew 18:20 NIV says, “For where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them.”
At times like this, coming together in prayer and promoting peace encourage people not to stay in that place of despair. It is an opportunity to know God more and reassure yourself and others that He is your comfort in times of trouble.
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1 NIV)
If you and your family are deeply affected by this disastrous event, we would love to comfort you through prayers. You may reach out to the CBN Asia Prayer Center or send your prayer requests to our Facebook page.