How To Come Out of the COVID-19 Lockdown Mentally Stronger
By Patrick Adams
Leading a ‘normal’ life during the current coronavirus pandemic outbreak is in no way easy. The confinement and lockdown take their toll on our mental wellbeing. People cope with this ongoing situation in different ways – they are called either active or passive copers. The difference is that active copers generally emerge as mentally stronger as they tend to use their time for doing something constructive, such as taking up a hobby or working on self-improvement. The underlying reason for such behaviour is that it provides a sense of internal control in cases when external control is not possible. So, if you’re not sure how to become an active coper, read our tips on improving mental health during coronavirus.
1. Organise yourself
In order to stay mentally and emotionally strong during COVID-19, you need to organise yourself well. Look at it as a little modified version of your usual everyday routine. Make a working schedule, have a designated time for starting and finishing your work as well as breaks and stick to these. Also, dedicate some area in your home to work and make yourself a cute little office or working area. Do the usual, get up on time, take a shower, get ready and dressed, put on some makeup and have breakfast and coffee. This will give you a sense of a routine. You can also take a short walk in your yard or somewhere outside and breathe some fresh air as well as absorb some sunshine.
2. Keep in touch with your family and friends
Even though social distancing is recommended and advised, it doesn’t mean that we can’t stay in touch with close people. Thanks to modern technology and the internet era, we can easily keep in touch with our family and friends, may they be in the same town and country as we or not. Apps such as Facebook, Instagram, Viber and WhatsApp, among others, allow us to see our family and friends, to speak with them and be up to date about the things that are happening in their lives at the current moment. We can this anytime, anywhere. We are social beings, so socializing even virtually, when in-person is not an option will bring us plenty of benefits, including peace of mind.
3. Do something for yourself
Times like these bring some unique opportunities. Perhaps the pandemic has brought us more free time, but we’re unable or don’t know how to use it constructively. This is the perfect time to think about the things you’re always wanted to do or the things you’ve never had time for. Consider learning some new, such as a language or any other skill you wish. You can find all of this online nowadays and enjoy getting educated from the comfort of your own home. Take up a hobby – even if you want to take up a completely new hobby, you can learn about it online. Some other options include taking up a self-improvement course or perhaps a course on some historic topic. Anything you think of and that is your area of interest will do here. Take it slowly and enjoy it. Your brain will thank you later!
4. Be active both physically and mentally
In these tough times, it’s also important to be active both physically and mentally. Doing these activities helps us in relieving stress that we constantly feel, even more now in this global crisis. Find some fitness programs online that suit you and start exercising. You can get some basic equipment and make yourself a handy little home gym. As for the mental exercise, try practising yoga or pilates – there are plenty of videos online that can teach you. Moreover, to ease your mind, you can also read some books.
5. Base your assumptions on the virus on reliable sources and avoid constantly watching the news – it can be stressful and overwhelming
The biggest threat to our mental health during times like these is our brain itself. The things our brain can conceive, nothing can, and this often has a bad effect on us. The media play a key role here. They keep bombing us with information and news all day, every day. This can be quite overwhelming. Not to speak about the reliability of the information they publish. Many times they are overdramatic, providing false or partially true pieces of information, that are often based on personal opinion and not sturdy, medical evidence. So, choose carefully where you seek the information you need and definitely avoid watching the news all day. Unfollow any such ‘breaking news’ pages on social networking sites that bring you distress.
6. Try focusing on positive things
Even though it is tough keeping a positive mind, we need to force ourselves into doing it. Try focusing your attention on the positive sides of this situation. Think about the free time you have on your hands and the best ways of using it for doing some constructive things and improving yourself.
The pandemic situation is tough for everybody and it can cause some serious mental issues and deteriorate our mental health. In order to avoid going through a long and tedious recovery, we should do our best and focus on maintaining our mental wellbeing.
Patrick Adams is a freelance writer and rock-blues fan. When he is not writing about home improvement, he loves to play chess, watch basketball, and play his guitar. More than anything, he loves to spend his time in his garage, repairing appliances and creating stuff from wood.