Manage mental health during COVID

COVID-19 has been hard on all of us. Everyone wearing mask, social distancing, your favorite restaurants closed, nothing to do. Some are even staying away from family members. This is hard on our mental state. Human beings are social creatures. If you take away social activities, mental health will spiral. So how do we “keep it together” during the time of COVID?

Find something to do with your immediate family. One popular hobby of 2020 was camping! Have you noticed the amount of campers on the road lately? It’s easy to hang out with your family risk free in the wilderness. Go on a hike, visit geological formations, build a fire, cook S’more‘s, grab the guitar and sing songs.

Take up a sport that encourages distancing, like golf or Frisbee golf. Frisbee golf is pretty inexpensive to get started and most parks have free to use Frisbee golf courses. Golf, in general, you are only around people you play with and other players will not approach your hole until you are done. This was so before COVID as it was considered a common courtesy.

Play games! Playing table games such as Rummikub can be very amusing and sharpen your mind. Games like Guesstures and Catch phrase will make you laugh. Try to stay away from games that encourages conflict, like monopoly. Video games that encourage co-operative play, give you a chance to hang out with your friends virtually.

Try to stay away from social media. Believe it or not, social media actually contributes to diminishing mental health. Most things on social media impact us negatively because the content we are attracted to is mostly negative. Social media is addictive. The more likes and shares we get make us feel good for a short moment but leaving us hanging with the need to repeat the process. When the result are not the same, it leaves us feeling down.

Reinvent yourself! Do something you wouldn’t normally do. Write a book, build a small boat, paint a picture, design something . Do anything besides mindlessly scrolling on social media platforms. The feeling of accomplishing something is very rewarding. There is something exhilarating about finishing a project and saying “I did that!”.

The first step of getting out of a mental slump is to make the decision to do it. All your feelings are no more than a decision you have made. You have to actually decide to be sad or happy about anything or any situation. You have to decide to put your phone down and do something.

How we handle COVID-19 as a society and how long it will last, is still “in the air”, but how we handle ourselves is up to us.

If you are having feelings of suicide or you are just extremely depressed please call 1-800-273-8255.

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