The “cost of living crisis” is a label or tagline that flows off the page very easily.
Wherever you look, there is reference to it, often either written in unhelpful or anxiety-creating language.
A lot of media coverage is providing us with essential information so we can make informed choices about the months ahead. But I would also urge everyone to remember not all sources of news coverage are accurate.
Can we really believe everything we read? Of course not. Many reports are too focussed on the emotions this situation is triggering – an all too easy game for something as serious as the fuel and budget fiasco that is brewing up across Europe right now.
While we cannot necessarily help our reaction – which can become very draining and distracting – we can take control of how much of it we absorb.
I remember talking about this during the early days of the coronavirus epidemic. Self monitoring applies now as it did then.
If the drip feed of fear-fuelled media is causing you to feel anxious about the immediate future, take a step back.
Unless you are employed in a role where you have a direct effect on the policies or prices we face, it’s okay to take a break from it. Switch off your news feed or radio for a few hours or a few days.
If you are feeling overwhelmed by your situation, I would urge you to seek help.
My first port of call would be Citizens Advice. Go to www.citizensadvice.org.uk.
Getting help is not easy but the hardest part is the first phone call or first contact.
If, having read this, you want to help others, I would suggest finding a charity that provides meals to feed people in need.
One such charity is the Country Food Trust, which uses game to produce single pouches or catering packs to support other charities feeding large numbers of people who need such support. You can find out more about them at www.thecountryfoodtrust.org.
Without doubt, this is the season to look after yourself by taking a step back when we need to and by asking for help when we feel overwhelmed.
It is also time to look out for our neighbours too.
Alice Johnsen is a life coach. Telephone 07961 080513. Website alicejohnsen.co.uk.