With the coronavirus pandemic sweeping across the globe, it’s very easy to panic. With constant information coming in via social media, cable news, or even the daily newspaper, it’s difficult to decide when to unplug. At what point is all of this information overwhelming us rather than keeping us informed? And this is just one way your mental health could suffer throughout this crisis.
Throughout this time that we are making self-quarantine and social distancing our day to day lifestyle, we must remember that mental health is no less important than our physical health. Contracting Covid-19 would be a threat to our physical health, but all of the anxiety and fear that may be experienced during this time is negatively impacting our mental health.
How do we take care of ourselves and reduce our negative emotions amidst all of this panic and fear? It’s much easier said than done, but here are a few tips:
- Decide What Amount of Media Coverage is Right For You— every person is different. Deciding how much time you want to spend taking it all in can be a difficult decision. Some people might need to limit it almost completely, as it makes them anxious or overwhelmed. Others may feel panicked if they do not watch it enough, for fear of missing something important. Neither way is wrong, but it’s important to decide where you find yourself between these two ends of the spectrum.
- Rediscover a Hobby — With all of the time we’ll be spending either alone or with our very close family members, it’s good to reflect in the things you have enjoyed doing throughout your life and maybe pick some of that back up. Maybe it was painting or maybe it was reading. Re-ignite that passion!
- Keep Your Self-Care in Mind — take some serious time with yourself. Maybe it’s making a really good meal for yourself, taking a bubble bath, or listening to your favorite music. Don’t stop taking care of yourself just because you aren’t going out. These are the things that you enjoy on a day to day basis. Indulge in them and use them to your benefit!
- Set Some Goals for Yourself - during a crisis it can be easier to see what is important to you. Really check in with what you're feeling right now. Do you need to make saving money a bigger priority, are you missing one person more than you expected? Take stock of the things that are bothering you the most right now and commit to making them a priority in the future.
These things aren’t sure-fire ways to make you feel better. But doing some of them may keep you occupied and engaged during an otherwise difficult and lonely time. Staying inside and distancing yourself can save you and can save others. We are all in this together doing what’s best for our world, our country, and our neighbors- just working from home. ;)