As the days stretch on and the shelter in place orders continue to be extended nationwide, it’s likely that your mental health has taken quite the hit. Whether the stress of the pandemic itself is overwhelming or you find yourself so worried about the future that you’ve completely put your mental health on the back burner, it’s become much more difficult to stay grounded
and to take care of your well-being.
Amidst the chaos surrounding the Coronavirus, it is easy to forget about your mental and emotional health and the upkeep of it all. Moreover, long spells of self-isolation and social distancing can instigate even stronger feelings of anxiety and depression. This doesn't even include the mental strain caused by unemployment or financial stress. Now more than ever, it’s imperative that you take the time to make you and your mental health a priority.
Seek Out Important Answers
There is plenty to weigh on your mind these days, from nationwide business closures to trips to the grocery store feeling more like entering a battlefield than a mundane chore. There is also the added stress for parents as childcare options become slim to none and schools move to remote learning. It’s a lot to juggle, and it is undoubtedly draining on your mental health.
The most important thing when trying to weather these anxious and stressful feelings is to seek help when you need it. One thing to keep in mind through all of this is that you’re not alone in your concerns, and more and more resources are becoming available to help you during the pandemic. Whether you find yourself unemployed, your small business at risk, or you’re sharing custody of a child with an ex-partner during the Coronavirus, seeking out online resources for answers to your legal questions
and exploring what others have done to stay sane in their personal lives can really help reduce some of your stress.
While our futures may still be uncertain, taking the right precautions and learning about your options can take away a lot of those negative feelings of hopelessness and gloom and make you feel more secure.
Use Available Resources
With so many facets of our society thrown into disarray, it’s possible that you might start experiencing chronic and severe mental health issues. For many of us, it’s the first time in our lives that we have ever dealt with something as severe as the Coronavirus, which means it’s especially important to prioritize our mental health. Now is the perfect time to reach out to ask for help from your doctor, mental health counselor, or psychiatrist.
According to mental health experts at Bradley University
, 82% of Americans who experienced psychotherapy found it very or somewhat helpful, and 75% of Americans found prescription medications very and somewhat helpful. During this abnormal time, it’s perfectly normal to need extra help to process all of these changes. The best part is that many counselors and psychiatrists are seeing patients through online video chat sites like Zoom or Google hangouts.
If you currently don’t have a therapist or medical professional, ask those you trust for their recommendations or simply research through online reviews of local counselors.
Help Others to Help Yourself
There is a lot of truth in the age-old idea that helping others can make you feel happier and healthier. Not only does it make you feel more positive to provide help to others when you can, but during a pandemic such as this, each member of the community needs to rely on each other as much as possible.
Simple acts such as picking up necessities for an elderly neighbor or donating to an unemployment relief fund can go a long way to boost your mental health. While it isn’t always possible to help with money or service, you can still help. Write an uplifting letter to your friend or next-door neighbor. Start an online mental health discussion where others can contribute stories of their struggles and successes as well as lend advice. When you think of others, you inadvertently open up more possibilities and avenues for helping your own mental health.
As you spend these days trying to process and cope with the many changes to our everyday lives, remember that the health of your mental and emotional well-being
should be a top priority. While it’s okay to feel sad, lost, and full of worries for your future, you should also keep in mind that there are resources to help you. Sometimes, the first step is to accept that you’re not okay. From there, you can begin the path towards feeling more at peace with the current situation and see the light at the end of the tunnel.