How To Take Care Of Your Mental Health During Isolation
Whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, this kind of isolation that we’re all facing right now is likely taking a toll on your mental health. Being distanced from your extended family, as well as close friends and coworkers, being out of a job temporarily, it can all leave you feeling unlike yourself. Here are a few tips to help you take care of your mental health while in isolation.
1) Organize Your Space: This may seem like a small task, but when you’re home 24/7, it’s easy for spaces to get cluttered and messy. When you’re surrounded by clutter, it tends to clutter your mind. Not only does organizing ease your mind, it also relieves stress. Give yourself the goal of organizing one area of your house each day. You’ll feel accomplished, even if it’s a small task, checking something off of your to-do list just feels good, and the space now doesn’t take up precious mental energy worrying about the clutter.
2) Seek Comfort from Others: It’s often really difficult to share when you’re struggling. For some, it’s the pride, for others it’s the stigma around mental health. You have to remember that everyone around you is dealing with likely similar feelings right now. You may actually help others if you’re open and honest about your feelings. Find yourself a few friends that you can confide in about what you’re struggling with. Seek them out regularly so you can find a bit of community, comfort, and peace. You can video chat, text, and enjoy each other’s company and input, even if it’s from a distance.
3) Get More Movement: While you may not have any at home weights or work out equipment, it’s still important for you to get as much movement as possible. It’s easy to get down and only want to move from the couch to the bed and the bed to the couch. However, getting a workout in can help with your stress levels and can release feel good hormones that can help boost your mood. There are free videos online if you’re looking for something you can do in your living room, go for a walk in your neighborhood, or get outside and start working in the garden.
4) Breathe: Most of us have a little extra time on our hands right now, so use yours to get into a routine of meditating and deep breathing. You may not have a schedule right now but approach each day as if you do, and put deep breathing on the list once or twice a day. It helps with your stress levels and gives you a moment to put everything into perspective.
5) Relax: Life is all about balance. Sometimes self-care is really about getting stuff done, and sometimes it’s about relaxing and taking a rest. When you need to unwind, make sure you’re taking care of your mental health at the same time. Block off a period of time and do something you enjoy. Make sure to avoid movies or shows about anything that may trigger or worsen your anxiety.
6) Limit Social Media
Right now people are spending more and more time on social media. Social media can be a great place when it comes to seeing your loved ones and keeping up to date on what is going on it the world. Unfortunately, it can have it's downside too. So much information, views and opinions pulling for your attention can be overwhelming and mentally exhausting. Set timers on your phone to remind you to take a break and do something else.
7) Find Motivation Somewhere
When you realize you are not in a good place mentally it can be hard to find motivation to change. You know you should be doing something but you just can't find the motivation to do it. Having an accountability partner is a great way to help you get that push. Reading motivational material or surrounding yourself with things that will motivate you can help as well.
8) Find a Telehealth Professional: We can throw around all kinds of simple ways to help manage stress and encourage good mental health, but sometimes professional help really is needed. If you’re struggling beyond just feeling a little blue, now may be the perfect opportunity to seek out a mental health professional. Telehealth options are widely available, even more so now, so take advantage and start getting the help you need, right from home.
Life is already stressful enough. When you add in a pandemic and this kind of isolation, it can put those struggling with their mental health already, in an even more dangerous place. Make sure you’re taking care of you, however that looks. Use these tips to help.