Staying On Track: Five Steps For Preserving Your Mental Health During The Pandemic
Today’s world is one brimming with uncertainties. In 2020 alone, we have witnessed fluctuating stock markets, devastating wildfires, and, of course, a deadly global pandemic. These far-reaching events, when coupled with the trials and tribulations of everyday life, can weigh heavy on one’s mental health. This reality is backed by statistics: In May 2020, a federal survey of Canadians revealed that 52% of people indicated that they felt the pandemic and social distancing requirements had worsened their cognitive well-being.
ProSafe First Aid does not just specialize in heavy equipment training or CPR preparedness. We offer a full spectrum of courses that encompass all nuances of maintaining health and well-being, offered both in-person and online. As the weather worsens and global events continue to shock and surprise, we wanted to bring attention to some of the ways that you can focus on your mental health during these unprecedented times:
Though you may feel cooped up inside your home, a conversation with a friend or family member is only a click or phone call away. Cell phones, social media, and video chat technology like Zoom have allowed us to be more in-tuned than ever before, even when we are not in the same room. Human connection is invaluable, and it’s important to sustain it however we can.
If you are feeling down and out, be open with others and understand that there is no shame in feeling distressed, particularly in times like these. If you are able to help out other people while remaining socially distanced, do so. A quick check-up or grocery delivery to your neighbours is a gesture that will support both of you.
2. Stay Healthy
Gyms and fitness classes may not be the ideal places to visit right now. That does not mean that you can’t work out and stay active at home, though. Consider joining online fitness classes, or equip yourself with an exercise bike or rain-resistant running gear. Keeping your blood pumping releases endorphins that will inevitably put you in a more stable mindset.
Diet is important too – there is nothing wrong with treating yourself with pizza or ice cream, but try to stick to healthier foods when you can. If you do get sick, lots of fruits, vegetables, and vitamins will help your immune system cope and recover faster.
Knowing and understanding your current state of being is an important part of maintaining mental health. We all feel anxious or negative thoughts sometimes. Reflecting on the source of these feelings is a step towards feeling better. Noticing and challenging your thoughts, rather than trying to ignore or suppress them, is an invaluable practice with fantastic benefits.
4. Watch Your Media Consumption
We all know the phrase, ‘ignorance is bliss’. Ignorance isn’t necessarily an ideal state of mind, but it is something that can be practiced in doses so as to ease stress. All day, our minds are inundated with negative news, whether from television, social media, or interactions with others. Although it is important to stay up to date with current events, consider occasionally shutting off the information pipeline to give yourself a welcome break.
Make sure you fact-check whichever news sources you are checking the most, and find ways to learn about the latest news in short, defined periods. If you find that news consumption is a large part of your day, replace it with activities such as reading, exercise, or relaxing with those within your social circle.
5. Get Help When You Need It
Although stressing about the future is a common symptom of the pandemic-stricken world, too few people seek help when it comes to their mental health. If you are feeling constantly worried, anxious, or depressed, acknowledge that there are many resources available to help alleviate these feelings. Start by talking to friends, family, or colleagues, and also consider speaking with a primary care provider or mental health professional. There are a variety of options to speak with specialists remotely, so that proper social distancing can be maintained while you get the help that you require.
It may sometimes feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders. The team at ProSafe is committed to reducing that burden as much as possible. We hope that the aforementioned steps help you achieve a sense of calm and order. Don’t forget, help and solace can be just a phone call away.
If you are concerned about how Covid-19 is impacting the mental state of your family, friends, or co-workers, consider taking a Mental Health Awareness course, available in our elearning portal.