How to mentally deal with ‘dark winter’ months during a pandemic

News, Views


From anxiety around new Covid shutdowns to the grief we feel from needing to reimagine holiday plans, everyone is struggling right now. Fox 2 recently interviewed Provident therapist and crisis line manager Jessica Vance about how to manage emotions as we head into what experts are calling Dark Winter.

Here are some tips she shared:

Plan Ahead

Holiday traditions – some that people have enjoyed their entire lives – may need to look a bit different this year. Provident recommends planning ahead for how you will celebrate. Do a test run with a Zoom meal so you don’t add stress on the day of while you figure out how to make things work. Schedule small joys like phone calls, movies, or even a bath, to keep the day busy, which can minimize the anxiety leading up to it.

Start Small

You don’t need a grand plan for feeling better. It can be as simple as taking a freshly baked cookie to a next door neighbor or going for a walk. The key is to step outside the ordinary and recognize the importance of these small changes.

Like the Season… Be Thankful

Be thankful for a nice day by making time to go outside. Write a letter to someone telling them how they’ve made a difference in your life. Feeling and showing appreciation has a ripple effect that starts by making yourself happier, then washes over others.

What should you do if you find yourself having a difficult time?

The Provident crisis line is there for you if you’re struggling or even if you know someone who is and you are looking for advice on how to help. We’re there to answer the call 24/7, even on holidays. Our website is and our phone number is 314.647.4357

Click here to view the full segment.