Ever since the arrival of Covid 19, life as we know it completely changed with implementations of lockdowns and quarantine. Such changes came with a snowball of other negative effects like job loss, lack of socializing and less human contact with terms like social distancing. The entire world found itself gripped in fear with a stark change in daily routines that we have been accustomed to our entire lives. With the dawn of the pandemic, it has forced us to be in touch with our inner selves as the hustle and bustle of life, work, going out and getting things done came to a screeching halt.
This time in history has outlined how important mental health is. Statistics from the World Health Organisation states there has been a 65% increase worldwide in mental disorders from those who were already diagnosed with a form of mental illness as well as a recent diagnosis brought upon the by challenges of the pandemic. Frontline workers are the type of people who were most vulnerable to mental instability due to the immense pressure Covid-19 has placed on essential workers all around the world. Finding a healthy mental coping mechanism is necessary as many people have turned to negative ways of coping through engaging in excessive drinking, eating disorders and multiple sexual relationships.
Here are some recommended ways to cope during tough times proposed by a clinical neuropsychologist, Dr. Sahbah Naidoo who is a licensed mental health speaker and clinical psychologist with a masters in neurosciences in psychology from the University of Cambridge
- Take time to exercise even if it is a minimum of 20 minutes in the comfort of your own home or safely in the gym as exercise produces dopamine which is responsible for a positive mood.
- Practise self-care such as meditation, reading a book or learning a fun new skill such as trying a new recipe in the kitchen.
- Keep in touch with those you love. It’s important to be reminded you are loved and to give love to those important to you.
- Indulge in your favourite food, treat yourself once in a while but be sure not to overeat.
- Read, listen and keep positive energy by watching seminars, workshops or motivational videos. Research by scientists shows that what humans hear and see over a period of 30 days starts to form part of the subconscious of the brain.
- If you feel your mood is out of control, consult your nearest psychologist
There will be times where we feel down but it is important to do all we can to bring up our spirit as to avoid any negative outcome of a low mood, as it may lead to acts of suicide, hospitalization or mental disorder that may get very drastic and lead to plain insanity. So always remember, mental health is wealth. In a time like this, it is so easy to give in to the fear and negativity that may come along with this pandemic. But our mental health is a weapon we can utilize to overcome the pandemic of Covid -19.