How’s your mental health during this trying time?
Do you feel the struggle to adjust to this “new normal” surrounding – social distancing, self-isolation, quarantine, or lockdown?
That feeling of making you worry, scared, anxious, down, or bored..well, you are not alone!
During this time, as much we have to stay inside the house to protect ourselves from COVID-19, it’s not just our physical health that’s at risk, it’s also our mental health and well-being.
Having our daily routines being changed in a snap is a great factor that could result in depression. Most likely because we lost the things that normally keep us emotionally well.
For the first week being in lockdown, it’s like the holidays, right? We appreciate those mornings that we don’t need to wake up early to go to work. We are able to tend to our kids’ needs – cook their favorite food, play with them. Those areas in the house that we keep forgetting to clean because of being busy at work, we finally have time to do so.
However, for the following weeks, as we see the daily number of infected increases exponentially, being trapped inside the house feels like it’s been years already. And there’s no hope that the lockdown will be lifted in the coming weeks, but chances are it will be extended.
So there’s that feeling that you can’t understand. You know that it’s for the good and safety of your family, but you’re dreaded to go outside, go back to your normal daily activities, keep on wishing that everything will go back to the way it is.
But it won’t..at least, for now.
Cause on an honest note, we are at war. A war that we can only win if we stay at home. And even though this is far different from countries throwing missiles, bombs, the casualties here are also those that can’t fight and are helpless.
So being scared that you might be infected by the virus if you’re feeling some symptoms but can’t be tested right away can have a negative impact on your mental health too.
Some might also have the stress of not getting their paychecks since they cannot go to work because of the lockdown. Well, not everyone can work from home right? And not all companies can still provide paychecks to their employees because their operation has been halted so no revenue.
How about the impending recession? We’ve been hearing about this for weeks now because of the recent lockdowns that are greatly affecting the economy/financial stability of each country being infected by the virus. Of course, once this happens, thousands of people could lose their jobs and you may be one of them, companies could go bankrupt, and so on.
There’s also the fact that there could be a shortage of supplies like food, necessities, anytime now. The government keeps on saying that there will be no shortage of supplies, but people would still be panic buying thus making the supplies limited for days in the supermarket.
And it’s not only adults that can feel depression. Children can likely experience fear and anxiety too. Class is canceled, can’t go out to play with their friends, also, if parents show that they are anxious, it could have a negative impact on children’s behavior.
So are these in your thoughts from the past weeks?
How are you able to fight that anxiety you feel?
Check out this “Declutter Your Mind” eBook, which will show you how to practice specific mindfulness techniques that will create more “space” in your mind to enjoy inner peace and happiness.
Here are also some ways we think that could be of help to protect your mental health during this crisis:
Limit COVID-19 news intake on social media. We know how bad this virus is. And there’s nothing we could do but stay at home. So stop scrolling furiously, trying to be updated on COVID-19. This is an endless loop of bad news and we don’t have control over it so don’t let it have control over you by increasing your stress. Just follow trusted news sources and read them in the morning or just watch the news in the morning and/or evening for 30 minutes and that’s it. Again, stop stressing yourself more.
Structure your daily activities. Being on the move everyday then suddenly you’re stuck inside the house, are the people who usually develop anxiety. The everyday norm of being outside the house, going to the office or school, might find themselves uncertain and lost and not know how they will spend their time. So stick to your daily activities. Still wake up on your normal schedule, assign each person inside the house their work tasks, like cooking, cleaning the house, doing exercise, etc. Find ways to keep yourself busy every day.
Eat healthily and sleep regularly. It’s been said over and over, boosting your immune system is a way to fight the virus. So to overcome the fear of being infected by COVID-19 is to make sure that your body is strong and healthy. Don’t let the stress be the reason why you have to eat your “comfort foods” that we know aren’t healthy. This is the time that we have to start loving and take good care of our bodies. Get enough sleep too. It’s important for emotion regulation.
Stay in touch with your family and friends. Know that everybody is fighting this virus, not just you. Use the power of video calls to stay connected with them. Talk to them. Share what you feel and know their feelings too. Don’t be shy in expressing your feelings as that may be how others feel too. One way to protect your mental health is to have an outlet of all those feelings. In this trying time, what we should appreciate is the fact that everyone is struggling and you’re not alone.
Lastly, maintain or don’t be shy seeking a mental health professional as much as possible. There are online apps now that can be used to connect with them, via Zoom, Skype, etc., or if they’re okay with phone sessions, that would be better.
Feel overwhelmed by your thoughts?
Don’t let those frustrations stay inside your head. It’s normal to feel those things as everyone’s been caught off guard with this pandemic. Just make sure to stay connected and give yourself a sense of purpose to manage your mental health.