National isolation, economic upheaval and COVID panic are all taking their toll on our mental health. The WHO has already predicted that one in four people in the world will be affected by a psychological problem at least once in their lifetime. And now, the impact of the pandemic might just worsen the situation. In fact, 50% of Chinese healthcare workers have reported depression and 47% of Canada’s frontline workers have admitted to the need for psychological support, according to data released by the World Health Organization.
Given that the United States had 2.04 million confirmed cases, as of June 11, 2020, stay-at-home measures cannot be altered for now. The good news, however, is that mindful techniques, relaxation approaches and meditation training can help regulate stress and emotions and make people better able to cope with the situation, say experts at the Institute For Personal Growth. Here are a few other strategies approved by psychotherapists to lift your spirits during this time of isolation.
1. Stay Connected
Let social distancing not turn into emotional distancing! Connect with your loved ones regularly and take updates on their lives. You can also contact psychotherapists, since most of them are offering quality online sessions these days. Talk to your friends about your day, new hobbies or schedule fun activities with the family. Offering and receiving much required assurance and support in times of distress can keep you going.
2. Follow a Set Routine
To ensure a sense of structure and control, maintain your old routine or create a new one. This can also prevent overwhelming thoughts and keep you productively engaged. In fact, you are less likely to feel worthless at the end of the day when you follow a regular routine. Continue to water the plants, take your dog for a walk to an uncrowded place, get exercise, make meal preparation a family event, etc. Also, with the additional space and time, make sure to relax and refresh your mind from time to time.
3. Avoid Unreliable Information
You might want to stay updated on the latest developments regarding the Coronavirus and ongoing Black Lives Matter protests and other events in your city/ However, make sure to only check trustworthy sources for information. Since the outbreak of COVID-19, the internet has been flooded with countless myths and rumors. These can leave your emotions swinging from sadness to anger to fear really quickly. Therefore, be mindful about what you read to keep yourself grounded. Also, refer to official websites like those of the CDC, UN and WHO, for information.
A few other effective ways to keep yourself mentally healthy are taking good care of your body, staying away from social media at times and avoiding drugs and alcohol, according to an article by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.