MENTAL HEALTH IN THE FACE OF COVID 19

At this time when we are facing a global pandemic, everything feels weird. It feels weird not to shake hands, or hug, not to see your friends or even leave the house. We all feel that everything has been brought to a standstill. All is not normal. We all are wondering when all of this will come to an end. It feels like the world will come to an end anytime from now. Whether it will happen I do not know. We just need to keep on praying. Our lives are in his hands.

Our mental health is a very important aspect of our lives. It is a very crucial element and in such times of crisis, we must be careful to protect our mental health lest we crush.

I understand fear and anxiety are normal emotions in such times therefore, allow yourself to feel these emotions but develop the ability to have them under control.

There are different ways in which you can control your emotions and take care of your mental health during this time.

  • Avoid excessive exposure to social media and media coverage.

The rising count of COVID 19 locally and globally could get you frustrated. Checking up social media where fear and anxiety is being perpetuated will lead you to experience hopelessness and hinder you from developing mental stability.

  • Add extra time for daily stress relief

What acts as a stress reliever for you? Spend more time doing that particular thing. It will alleviate your anxious thoughts and help you to relax and in turn, be more productive. Like I am currently spending a lot of time reading and writing.

  • Set boundaries around discussions of COVID 19

Tell your contacts you do not want to receive any messages in regards to COVID 19 updates. This is a boundary that can help you be calmer and not focus on the ongoing events.

  • Do that which you have always wanted to do now that you have more time

There is that one thing you have always wanted to do around the house but you have never done it as you never had the time- now this is the time. Clean that mess up, repair that machine, learn a language or skill – we are blessed to have YouTube. Make this time meaningful by engaging in something of additional value to your own life.

  • Take a shower when you wake up

Take a shower early so as to go about your day when fresh.  There is little to no productivity that happens when you take a shower at 1200hrs or 1500hrs.

  • Wear clean, presentable clothes

Wear clean clothes to give you a fresh look. Wearing pyjamas just makes you look pyjamish.

  • Get adequate sleep

This sounds like something you already are doing but listen up. If you used to wake up at 0500hrs you have the liberty to wake up at 0700hrs if there is nowhere that you are heading to. Sleep the recommended 6-8hrs if you do have to wake up early.

  • Call/ text someone.

We have the privilege of living in a tech survy world. Use technology properly. Call that friend you want to see so bad on WhatsApp video call, skype or zoom. I know it is not the same but connections are made of such.

  • Connect with God

We constantly complain we are too busy and that there is not enough room to pray or study the word. Guess what? Now you do. Spend time studying the word. You can even read a whole book of the Bible without rushing. You can spend ten minutes of each hour that you are awake in prayer. Well… it could be five.

  • Dial a therapist

If it gets overwhelming, call up a counsellor. There is an online counselling call service known as Niskize. You can reach them through the lines below at normal call rate.

I am hoping and praying that everything will get back to normal as soon as possible. However, as of now, we are in a situation which renders safer at home.

Pray this with me

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change; Courage to change the things I can, And wisdom to know the difference. Living one day at a time; Enjoying one moment at a time; Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace; Taking, as He did, this sinful world As it is, not as I would have it; Trusting that He will make all things right If I surrender to His Will; So that I may be reasonably happy in this life And supremely happy with Him Forever and ever in the next.

Amen.

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