How to Take Care of Your Mental Health in Times of the Coronavirus Outbreak

r
@riyamathur
29 Mar 2020

At Now&Me, we consider the consequences of COVID-19 on our mental health and psychological well-being to be very important. Here is how you can cope!

In times of a pandemic, for a virus outbreak, it is extremely important to ensure that you’re taking proper care of your mental health along with your physical health.

Ever since the world went into self-isolation to collectively fight the COVID-19 virus, it has been a battle to keep your mental health intact and stable. Here are some tips and how to deal with the panic and keep a sense of control over your mind!

1) Rely on legitimate news sources for information

In times of this panic, the are all sorts of rumors in the air, all kinds of information being circulated on social media platforms. In situations like these, it is essential for us to check the credibility of the source we are seeking the information from. And believe news only from legit sources like World Health Organisation (WHO), The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), etc. This helps us in avoiding being misinformed and further forwarding inaccurate information which might lead to panic.

2) News Distancing

Just like Social Distancing, its extremely important to distance yourself from the news time and again, as and when it starts to feel too overpowering for your emotions, causing distress and anxiety. Staying updated with the news is definitely a necessity in the current times; however, keeping a constant check every hour over the COVID-19 updates may only cause anguish. Keeping control of the amount of news you allow yourself to go through is a requisite to keep your mental health stable.

3) Stay in touch

In times of this self-quarantine and self-isolation, alongside physically isolating yourself, it is important to remember keeping in touch with your friends and acquaintances. In an abnormal and unusual situation like this, it is only being in touch with people that make us feel connected and feel a little sense of normalcy. Reaching out to people when in need to help to discuss your concerns or returning the gesture when a friend requires the same, keeps us all in a positive and safe environment knowing things will eventually get better.

4) Make a Routine

Break down your day, follow a specific schedule and don’t laze around. ‘An Idle Brain is a Devil’s Workshop’ stands true. Following a routine will help your mind stay focused and positive as you’ll be certain of what your day looks like. Along with following a routine, it is also important to eat healthy to boost your immunity and keep you fit.

5) Being Productive

Isolation should never stop anyone from being productive. Productivity is the key to prosperity. Utilising the time we have with us, by staying home and doing the things we like but never got the time to devote to because of the daily, monotonous cycle followed by the human race is probably the best way to deal with this situation. Some things that one can do to stay productive could be:

- Start an online course

With the various number of websites offering a variety of online courses, enroll yourself with a course of your choice. It’ll keep you occupied, get you a certificate and also give you a sense of productivity, boosting the positivity.

- Learn a new hobby

Whether it may be cooking, doing crochet, stitching or singing by watching YouTube tutorials, get yourself to learn that one thing that you have always wanted to but never got around to doing it.

- Write a journal or start a blog!

Jot down your daily activities, your past experiences or even your views or standpoints on certain things or situations. You never know who you may connect to through these blogs and might even end up helping random people reading your blog.

- Practice Yoga

Yoga is something that will always help you attain mental peace. Assign 10-15 minutes of your day and do yoga. It might also help you disconnect from the world and re-connect with yourself.

6) Practice Positive Thinking

In times like these, it is important to remind yourself every now and then about the positive things and aspects that can still be taken into consideration. Reminding yourself that things will get better and taking the necessary precautions to keep good health is important. One can also look at positive stories shared by the people who have recovered Coronavirus and go through the good news ever since Coronavirus.

For instance:

  • A 103-year-old woman in Iran has recovered after being infected with the new coronavirus, state media reported, despite overwhelming evidence the elderly are most at risk from the disease.

  • China has closed its last Coronavirus emergency hospital

  • The water flowing through the canals of Venice is clear for the first time in many years

6) Seek Help from a Professional

If you feel your mental health is rapidly declining and looking at everything happening around you is giving you anxiety, seek help from a professional. There are various helpline numbers and a list of psychologists provided on our website, reach to someone who may be able to assist you professionally. One should realise its okay to feel overwhelmed, anxious, and distressed looking at the news and the happenings in the world. Accepting that you are feeling so timely and bringing yourself out of that spiral is what is of utmost importance.

Lastly, it is extremely important for us to look after ourselves in these times. With the extra time on our hands, we should take proper care of ourselves, our bodies, immunity and our mental health. We should focus on having a balanced diet. Most of us in this daily cycle of work, college or school are so occupied that we barely care about our food intake. While we are spending this time at home, we should focus on having a proper meal and food that will help us boost our immunity. Along with physical health, maintaining our mental peace is equally important. Disconnecting and detaching from the world for a bit can be a good idea. However, a healthy boundary should be set between a little and complete disconnection. Every now and then checking up on our friends and staying in touch will also keep us sane.

Being positive and spreading positivity will surely make things easier!


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