We are all so used to certainty and things going according to our plans. When things start to feel uncertain or unsafe, it is normal for us to feel stressed and anxious about the things we feel we should be able to control but are unable to. We are also aware that social distancing is the main way to suppress and stop the spread of this virus. Therefore, many countries have gone into lockdown and long-term quarantine. In these difficult and unpredictable situations, it is possible for our mental health to suffer. It is normal for you to feel angry, helpless, sad, and more frustrated. But, it is important to tell yourself that you can respond to it positively and that you have the ability to cope with it. Here are some things you can do to protect your mental health during this period:
Having control over your emotions
It is normal to feel worried about things when you are going through difficult periods of uncertainty. But, some people experience intense emotions of anxiety and fear in such situations. When you go through this, acknowledge and tell yourself that some things are not in your control, but that it’s okay. Instead, focus on the things that you can control such as the way you react, behave, and who you connect with. To cope with such anxiety and negative emotions, try spending each day doing mindfulness activities like yoga, meditation, art, or exercise.
Connect with your circle
It could be possible that you may have to go for a certain period of time without seeing your family, close friends, or people who are important to you. But, thanks to technology, connecting with others has never been easier. So, make sure to maintain relationships with the people you trust. Give them a call, video chat with them, do things together virtually; you could even doodle, colour, or work together. Supporting each other through this difficult time means that you will be less stressed and anxious, making you feel safer. If you want professional support, there are therapists available online for you to get support from. If you would like to see a therapist online, please click here.
It’s okay to unplug
We are in a time where we are flooded with news and information about the Coronavirus from all around us, and it sure can get overwhelming. Even though it is important to be updated about the issue in order to take the right precautions, try and limit how much you take in every day. You could try and have an hour or two out of the day where you put your phone down, restrict any information, and focus on yourself. Or, seek information updates at specific times during the day. Also, make sure you get information from reliable resources; misleading information can lead to unnecessary panic in an already panicked world.
Stick to a schedule
During this outbreak, a lot of us have been stuck indoors in self-quarantine or isolation. Although it is for the safety and well-being of everyone around, it definitely gets exhausting. You may find yourself lacking motivation and lazing on the couch all day. Start your morning by making a routine. During this time, plan what you intend to do for the day; you could divide it into categories like work, family, and me-time, helping you bring back a sense of normality. Include rising time, meals, exercise, projects and rituals for the day, and bedtime. Try to stick to a similar routine every day. To help you with this, we recommend an app, Any.do, a simple but effective way to review your tasks for the day.
Give yourself some extra love
Schedule time every single day to do things that you love or to nurture your body. This could be practicing a song or dance, cooking your favourite food, or having a hot bath. It’s also important to keep your body moving, get enough sleep, and eat nourishing food. This will help you be relaxed and positive, giving you the strength to cope with the difficulties that the day may bring.
Help at Heart It Out
If you are looking for care in this trying and testing times, you can get in touch with our psychotherapists at Heart It Out. You can message us on Whatsapp, call us or book a session through our website.
We are going through difficult times, but now is the time to support one another, stay hopeful, overcome this, and come back stronger.