Infectious disease pandemics such as the current COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak can be overwhelming for many and have a serious impact on our mental health. While it’s important to stay in the know on the latest developments regarding the pandemic, there are many things you can do to manage your well-being during this difficult time.
If you’re struggling to stay positive and upbeat, here are a few tips that may help.
Create a New Daily Routine
If you have been furloughed or been ordered to work from home, adjusting to a new temporary way of life can be challenging. It’s important that you have structure from the beginning, so creating a new daily routine that puts looking after yourself above anything else can help reduce stress levels. There are several things you can do, such as watching your favorite movies, reading more, or incorporating regular exercise into your routine. Being stuck indoors can be hard for extroverts, so taking up hobbies while inside the home can help keep your spirits up.
Stick to Reputable Sources
Whether it’s on the internet, television, or radio, we can’t seem to escape updates about COVID-19. If you’re a natural-born worrier, reading rumors and speculation will only fuel anxiety and make it harder for you to cope. It’s important that you have access to good quality and reputable information, which can make you feel more in control.
If you are having to self-isolate away from your nearest and dearest, this can have a negative impact on your mental well-being. In times of stress, we tend to work better with support around us, so while you may not be able to physically touch and see your loved ones, keeping in touch with friends and family via social media platforms, email, or telephone can be a big help and show you that you’re not alone during this time.
Try to Anticipate Distress
It’s natural to feel overwhelmed and vulnerable as you read the news about the outbreak. If you have experienced a mental health problem or trauma in the past, you may struggle with the effects of coronavirus more than others. It’s vital that you acknowledge these emotions and be aware of and avoid any increasing habits that may do you harm in the long term, such as drinking and smoking.
Many people will feel alone during the coronavirus pandemic, so if you need someone to talk to, you may want to contact the Kentucky Counseling Center. Online counseling and psychiatry can do wonders for your mental health and keep your spirits up. You should never suffer in silence, so remember that there are always people out there who want to help.
In these unprecedented times, it’s completely natural to feel out of your depth. As none of us have gone through such a pandemic before, the fear of the unknown can be too much to bear. If you’re struggling to get through the day, all the advice above may help reduce stress levels and keep you calm and relaxed.