Here are key strategies to help you maintain your mental wellness during the COVID-19 pandemic. Following these steps to manage stress and add a sense of normalcy can go a long way to help you cope with the ever-changing environment and help keep those around you calm and focused.
- Put on mellow, calming tunes. Studies show that your cortisol levels (the hormone that’s activated because of stress) will lower. Prolonged listening to high-intensity, loud music does the opposite — your nervous system revs and stress hormones increase.
- Practice deep breathing, stretch or meditate. Deep breathing helps you calm down rapidly, think more clearly and focus on what you are doing.
- Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting. T
- Take care of your body by eating healthy, well-balanced meals, getting enough sleep & rest and exercising regularly.
- Watch your negative self-talk. Notice how you answer the question, “How are you?” Do this over the course of a few days, writing down all the words you use, such as “fine, alright, good, great.” Notice how you can increase the ratio to favor positive words.
- Repeat a positive, helpful mantra such as: “Everything is going to be okay because where I am right now
is exactly where I need to be.”
- Maintain a sense of hope and positive thinking. Optimism helps us to approach unpleasant circumstances in a more encouraging and helpful way.