Right now is a hard time for everyone. It is especially difficult, I can imagine, for those with anxiety and depression. Now is an important time for everyone to take care of their mental health, even without the typically helpful coping skill of social activity and without the now more appreciated face-to-face therapy sessions. The good news is that this time allows you a very unique opportunity to do all of the things you have convinced yourself you did not have time for. Your self-care game should be at an all time high right now.
Some tips for getting through this:
Accept that this is overwhelming but don’t stay overwhelmed. Intentionally decrease your “whelming” to cope. Remind yourself “it is all okay.” Because it is all okay. We will make through this. Breathe deeply to help you get out of anxious thinking cycles. Yes it is scary but we can handle it.
Spend this spare time practicing meditation to ease your anxiety and sadness away. Find what types of meditation you enjoy. Start with short periods of time (10 minutes or less) and watch your thoughts but don’t get caught up in them. Come back to your breathe as much as needed with no judgement. Just practice. If it helps, find meditations set to send out healing energy or prayer to the world and those who are ill.
3. Get off the Internet-
Some Netflix is okay but extra careful with social media right now. People have a lot of opinions and this is not a time to be swayed by others opinions. You need facts, don’t avoid the truth of things but don’t get lost in others opinions of what is happening. Your mind consumes what you read and see, be mindful of what your brain is eating. Limit the news to once or twice daily.
4. Spend time with nature
You know who is not panicking? Nature! Outside is just as beautiful as can be right now (location depending- Florida is lovely). Go take a look. Breathe the fresh air in deeply. Let your connection to nature ground you to peace. The peace that exists so easily in nature, also exists so easily in you. Its something worth experiencing.
5. Show your pets extra love
We need comfort and they want to comfort us. Our pets the real winners here. Take the time to enjoy extra cuddles with your pets. This is also meeting our need for physical touch, since this is limited right now.
6. Move your body
It doesn’t matter how you like to move, just make sure that you are moving. We typically walk all while at work or out in about in the world. Make sure you move daily to make up for the lack of movement. Here is a time to use the internet wisely, Youtube has great work out videos. Try yoga, strength training, Pilates, any type of exercise instruction you can dream of, right in the comfort and safety of your home.
7. Create Something
Sometimes art helps people heal. Use the time and space of being home to find your creative side. No judging the finished product though, the goal is to just create something.
Find one small space to clear out a day. Focus on how it feels to release having too much stuff. Feel the joy that comes in having a space clean, fresh, and organized.
Read books that you’ve been wanting to read. Re-read books you know you enjoy. Allow your mind the pleasure of slowing down to read. Take your mind off of the pandemic for a few minutes.
We have to work with what we’ve got given the situation. If seeing your therapist on a screen is possible, it is likely better than nothing. Yes, it is awkward, screens are weird but don’t avoid therapy just because we may not be able to meet in person.
We are all in this together, just very separately. Stay strong, help others, reach out, be kind and we will make it to the other side of this. Use the time trapped at home to work on your self-care activities.
– Dr. Powers
Powers of Mind Psychological Services are offering teletherapy sessions and have openings this week (Florida Residents Only). We do not accept insurance. Go to DrPowersTherapy.com/Choose to find a therapist and schedule online. You can also call the office at 850-807-9801.