These trying times have forced most of us to stay at home, and it has turned our world inside out. We suddenly have to stop established routines, and to some, that means stopping their coping mechanisms like going to the gym, going out with friends, or traveling. With everyone in quarantine, we’re collectively forced to address personal issues that we’ve been avoiding or to change the way to address things that plague our minds.
It’s Here, It’s Real, and We Have to Deal with It
Some people are confused about why they’re suddenly feeling down, and even otherwise healthy people are displaying signs of anxiety and depression. This isn’t an isolated case as it’s rather connected. There’s data from medical institutes that state an increase in reports of mental health issues. It cannot be denied that the current situation does not allow for the best mental disposition. It would hurt us even more to deny ourselves the fact that what we’re feeling is OK, and that being sad at a time like this is valid. Being hard on ourselves is human nature. When faced with an obstacle, be it physical or mental, our first instinct is to be stubborn. But let’s all remember that what we’re feeling is normal.
Despite the turmoil the quarantine has placed on us, it has also given us something that we’ve been deprived of: time. We now have more time than we’ve ever had before what with being forced to work from home and, in turn, cutting the commute and preparation needed for work. The time we now have is our own. We can do whatever we want with it. It’s the best time to reflect on ourselves, work on self-improvement, and generally get our act straight to hopefully come out a better person once the pandemic ends.
Read a Book
On their own, books aren’t a panacea for a troubled mind, but they sure do help a lot. Reading books is a good way to keep one occupied, away from negative thoughts that cloud the mind. Just as push-ups and squats are exercises for the body, reading is an exercise for the mind. Science has shown that regular reading decreases the chance of dementia. It helps improve your memory, concentration, and of course, mood. The kind of book you read isn’t particularly important. Be it fiction or non-fiction, as long as it offers you enjoyment. Books offer a sense of virtual experience technology has yet to replicate. This is particularly important, as reading becomes a respite from all the happenings of the world.
Beyond the relief reading can provide, it also helps us develop skills we tend to overlook. Reading any form of literature helps us practice reading comprehension, something that’s sure to help in our everyday lives. Reading books on specific fields, like science, history, or even instructional books, not only takes our mind off our situation but also imparts skills that will prove useful someday. So, when you feel down, read a book. It can help you now, and it might help you in the future.
Similar to reading books, exercise has long been part of every psychologists’ prescription. And it’s well-supported by science, as research suggests that activities that increase our heart rates may play a role in reducing depressive symptoms. It’s even known to help with anxiety. Yet even with how often it’s prescribed and despite its proven effects, a lot of people overlook exercising. But now is the best time to get started.
You don’t need to purchase expensive exercising equipment. You can begin with simple exercises like jumping jacks, a few repetitions of push-ups, maybe even just running-in-place. The key is to find a comfortable pace to start with. It should be enough to work a sweat up, but not too much that you want to throw up. So begin slow, be consistent, and work your way from there.
Consult with a Professional
Ultimately, consulting a professional is an irreplaceable priority. Facilities like Camelback Recovery LLC offer help, and it’s something that’s worth mulling over. Nothing replaces professional help, and nothing should prevent you from seeking it. We can only do so much for ourselves, and once we think we can’t do more, it’s time to turn to the pros. Nothing is embarrassing about it. Even if we think we’re strong, consulting the proper authorities won’t do any harm. And in a time like this, we need all the help we can get.
Take Care of Yourself
This crisis has affected all of us in varying gravity, some worse than others. Employment has been very erratic, the economy is in danger, and even the act of going out is dangerous. This is a time when we have to take care of ourselves even more. We may be eating healthy, but we should never neglect what is perhaps the most important organ of all: our mind.