Over a year into the Covid 19 pandemic, the emotional toll is starting to weigh heavy. The dramatic and supposedly short-lived changes to our daily habits and rhythms have now become omnipresent. There continues to be so much uncertainty and worry, and the long-term implications feel daunting. The result is unusually high and pervasive levels of anxiety, stress, sadness, boredom, loneliness, frustration and even hopelessness.
Everyone deals with these uncomfortable feelings differently. What is important to remember, though, is that it is ok to not be ok and to ask for help if we need it. Taking care of ourselves should be as much a priority as looking out for those around us.
Some simple tips to follow to help improve your mental health and wellbeing are:
- Stay connected with people, especially the positive influences in your life
- Talk about your problems and feelings, you are not alone!
- Avoid spending too much time on social media and the internet, specifically on posts about topics that contribute to your sense of feeling overwhelmed
- Eat a nutritionally balanced diet and exercise (lockdown has revealed that there is a lot that you can do in your living room!)
- Do things that you enjoy, even if for just 30 minutes a day
- Focus on the here-and-now
- Practice meditation exercises
- Get enough sleep
Despite so much being out of our control, focusing on what we CAN control will bring about change. Accepting this new reality and staying committed to good habits is part of the challenge of getting through this difficult time. This is not an ordinary situation, reach out for help if you need it. There is no shame in needing help right now.