Four Tips to Manage Your Mental Health & Wellbeing During COVID-19
“This disease [Coronavirus] destroys you. I was mentally devastated more than physically. The loneliness of the illness makes it that much more difficult. I was in absolute isolation the entire time. That was tough.
I was thinking that I was going to die. I have lived very well, I have had a wonderful life, but maybe now it’s over. My only problem was leaving my wife alone.”
- Antonio Sales Martínez (COVID19 Survivor)
How have you been feeling lately? Are you feeling anxious, depressed, or perhaps having difficult thoughts? Does going back to normal at work and in social settings makes you feel stressed and terrified?
While the pandemic’s toll on mental health has been clear from the outset, we are now beginning to see some of the longer-term effects of ongoing social isolation, loneliness, financial uncertainty, fear, and related stressors.
It is undoubtedly, the pandemic has left some severe impacts on our lives and health. But there is always hope! If you suffer from anxiety, depression, substance use, and having complex thoughts, here are some proven techniques and strategies that can help you recover and support your mental health:
Exercise is a powerful medicine that benefits many mental health challenges. It promotes positive changes in our brains that affect neural growth, inflammation, activity patterns, and homeostasis and releases powerful chemicals that energize us and make us feel good. You can try;
• Restorative yoga
2.Take advantage of your Employee & Family Assistance (EFAP) program
The EFAP program is paid benefits that support employees and their immediate families to overcome personal and work-related challenges. The program offers confidential, short-term counselling as well as other wellness services. If your employer is providing this program, please take advantage of it to help you with your mental health challenges, such as;
• Stress • Depression
• Relationships • Grief/ Bereavement
• Addictions • Life Transition
• Anxiety • and more...
Click here to learn more about EFAP.
If you don’t have an EFAP in place, please ask your Plan Administrator to contact our Account Managers to get more information.
3. Mindful Exercise
Stress is a normal reaction to threatening situations. However, we need to find ways to ease and manage it. Because, without stress relief, the long-term activation of the stress response system can have some destructive consequences.
Refocus your attention through mindful exercises. Practice techniques with consistency and determination for optimal results. We suggest the following methods:
Why should you practice relaxation techniques?
Practicing relaxation techniques can have many benefits, such as;
• Regulating heart rate and lowering blood pressure,
• Controlling the breath,
• Quelling stress hormones,
• Improving sleep,
• Increasing energy,
• Caring for mental health,
• Eliminating frustration,
• and incredibly, maintaining normal blood sugar levels
4. Facilitate a balance between your work from home and your personal life
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, most of us have transitioned to work from home setting; however, the new normal can be very exhausting for some employees more than others.
In some cases, to be more productive, employees work extra time, or at all hours of the day/night – either because it’s easier to work a lot from home.
While working from home can support the balance and give flexibility to employees, without clear parameters, lines between work life and personal life blur.
It is undoubtful COVID-19 has negatively impacted our mental health and wellbeing since it has started. From experiencing the physical illness of Coronavirus to the loss of loved ones, from being socially distant to experiencing isolation from the public, it has been a rollercoaster. COVID-19 is not over yet, but we need to start the recovery process and support one another.
Focus on your health (physical and mental), check on your loved ones, stay connected (virtually), and most importantly, do not lose HOPE!