Coping through COVID-19
COVID-19 has enthralled every country with its outrageous presence. Measures are being taken globally, countries have restricted movement as an integral part of efforts to lower down the number of people infected by COVID-19, and all of us have been making big changes in our daily lives.
As countries introduce measures to restrict movement as part of efforts to reduce the number of people infected with COVID-19, more and more of us are making huge changes to our daily routines.
The new “normalities” of working from home, unprecedented ways of running businesses, temporary unemployment, and lack of physical contact with friends, colleagues and other family members, is taking its time to settle in. Adapting to such lifestyle change and parallel to that managing the fear of contracting the virus and paranoid or worry about the people who we are close to, especially who are most vulnerable, is pretty challenging to deal with. They can be particularly difficult for people with mental health conditions.
Fortunately, there are lots of things that we can do to look after our own mental health and to help others who may need some extra support and care.
Here are tips and advice that we hope you will find useful.
- Keep informed. Listen to advice and recommendations from your national and local authorities.
- Have a routine. Keep up with daily routines as far as possible, or make new ones.
- Get up and go to bed at similar times every day.
- Keep up with personal hygiene.
- Eat healthy meals at regular times.
- Exercise regularly.
- Allocate time for working and time for resting.
- Make time for doing things you enjoy.
- Minimize newsfeeds. Try to reduce how much you watch, read or listen to news that makes you feel anxious or distressed. Seek the latest information at specific times of the day, once or twice a day if needed.
- Social contact is important. If your movements are restricted, keep in regular contact with people close to you by telephone and online channels.
- Screen time. Be aware of how much time you spend in front of a screen every day. Make sure that you take regular breaks from on-screen activities.
- Social media. Use your social media accounts to promote positive and hopeful stories. Correct misinformation wherever you see it.
- Help others. If you are able to, offer support to people in your community who may need it, such as helping them with food shopping.
- Support health workers. Take opportunities online or through your community to thank your country’s health-care workers and all those working to respond to COVID-19.