Prioritizing your Mental Health during Lockdown
We are currently experiencing a time of great uncertainty and anxiety. From health concerns to financial concerns - we are facing unknown adversities that may seem overwhelming. The best way to combat these anxieties is to strengthen your mental health resources. This is not the time to put self-care on the back burner. Besides, more than before we have ‘free’ time to actually focus on building our psychological resources.
If you are in therapy continue seeing your psychologist via online methods. The holding and supportive function of therapy is essential during this time. If you have not seen a psychologist before now is the time to try it out.
Any questions email us on firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call or send us a WhatsApp on 081 759 4849.
Below we have listed a few things you can do to build your mental resources.
Focus on things that are in your realm of control. Spending time focusing on external variables will increase your anxiety and sense of powerlessness. Take a moment to consider what is in your control. This includes your words, your thoughts, your ideas, your actions, your decisions.
Acknowledge how you are feeling and the thoughts attached to these feelings. Through conscious awareness of our thoughts and emotions we have more control over how we feel and how to change it. This will prevent emotional outbursts and feelings of helplessness.
Use mindfulness to be present. Mindfulness is the process of focusing on the here and now, without focus on past or future. It can help a lot when feeling anxious about the unknown. One way of practicing mindfulness is by focusing on all 5 of your senses at any given time. (For example, 1 thing I can smell, 2 things I can feel, 3 things I can taste, 4 things I can see, 5 things I can hear). By doing this you are bringing yourself back into your body. This is a great grounding technique if you are feeling overwhelmed, or very anxious.
Create a new routine. So many things have changed. Putting structure and routine in your day will help you feel empowered and less anxious. Anxiety comes from feeling overwhelmed. Structure creates a sense of direction and accomplishment.
Set lockdown goals. Just because you are confined to your house doesn’t mean you can’t still be proactive. Set a list of achievable and manageable goals.
Spend time bonding with your family. Life is so rushed we often pass our family members without truly connecting with them. This is a great opportunity to actually spend time connecting with your partner and your children. Put down your cellphone, turn off the TV and engage with each other. Tell stories, play boardgames and most of all listen.
Find a new sense of purpose. For many people, this is a time that forces us out of our comfort zones. It is possible to feel as though your choice has been taken away from you creating further feelings of being trapped and defensive. However, by changing your mindset and finding a new sense of purpose, you can create a completely different set of opportunities which will help you to feel liberated.
Keep self-care in mind. In order to be the best version of yourself we need to make sure our ‘cups are full.’ Some might feel that this means being selfish. However, self-care helps us to be better for others. If we feel energized, content and empowered, we are easier to be with, more patient and are better at communicating. Keep in mind the activities that help fill your cup. This may be exercise (which can still be done at home), quiet time, taking a shower or baking a cake. Daily self-reflection, journaling and/or meditation is also helpful.
Prevent information overdrive. There is so much information in circulation now. Most of this information is false and is causing panic. Limit the amount of time you spend on social media and following updates. As much as you can, validate sources of information and reduce the amount of people you follow to only those you know have correct and truthful information.
Keep following our Facebook and Instagram pages as we will be posting daily tips and suggestions during lockdown.
If you are up for a mental health challenge join our Self Development Program which is online and easy to follow! https://www.meaningfulminds.co.za/self-help-programme
For any questions or thoughts, please feel free to contact us any time.
Meaningful Minds Psychologists
081 759 4849