COVID-19 and your Mental Health
I really debated if I wanted to write a post about COVID-19. I mean we are being submerged with constant information about this global pandemic and no matter where you look it has taken over our lives. I was thinking who needs another article on this virus and how it disrupts your life. You know how it affects you right? Or do you? COVID-19 is outside your home affecting what happens inside of your home taking a toll on your physical and mental wellbeing. Many of us are trying to avoid the COVID 15 when it comes to weight gain, and others are desperately trying to stick to some routine while not feeling like they are trapped in a twilight zone or living a modern-day Groundhog's Day. What many of us fail to realize, myself included, is that we are stuck so much on the idea of keeping normalcy in our lives, that we may be neglecting our own mental health signs. We are so busy trying to keep it together that we may be failing day by day. What is the best defense to this new normal we are currently living in? Start by being more self-aware of your daily routines and interactions. I have provided a quick self-check-in assessment to get you stated. Mental Health Self-Check-In How often are you... Watching the news? Getting fresh air? Talking to family and friends? Doing something enjoyable? Laughing? Resting/Relaxing? Getting at least 6 hours of sleep? Stressing about the unknown? Keeping routine doctor appointments?
This is just a simple and quick assessment you can do to gauge where you are spending your time and energy. In fact, you can also make your own questionnaire to survey your current daily activities. Regardless of your answers, the point is to start being mindful and track your activities. After the check-in, log your quantity and determine your mood around each activity. Ask yourself, am I stressed, has this activity increased or decreased my anxiety, am I feeling hopeless, do you feel energized or depleted? The answers to these questions are clues to gauging your mental health. Next, plan to make real changes that will support a healthier mental health state. Start creating limits and boundaries on activities that create a negative mood and plan more time on activities that bring you joy and support your personal well-being. Do this activity as many times as you need to stay grounded and mindful and share with close family and friends who would benefit from this assessment as well.
Remember everything is a process in this new pandemic world. Yet, self-care and mindfulness practices are still effective during this time. If your mental health is being seriously affective, find a local therapist and set up an appointment. There is nothing wrong with professional guidance. SNH