Show some love to your Mental Health
World Mental Health Day: 10th October 2020
2020 is a year of events, events that you would have never imagined - New vocabulary - Lockdown, Social Distance. Working from home is no longer looked in as an unproductive scheme of things and then students and teachers embracing online learning. How life just changed!
For a person like me who embraces change and looks at every situation positively, this was the best thing ever. Work from home is more productive than before (Zero office distractions). Now, lunches are hot and fresh, stove to plate, extra hour of sleep, longer running, cycling and strength training sessions. Evenings are fun with my boys around, scrabble or 'Friends' on Netflix. All in all - My quality of life has improved!
Everyone has not been as fortunate as me, many losing jobs, their home and lively hood. Many more dealing with loneliness like never before. This also brings us to an important aspect, that need to be put in the spot light - Mental Health and the need to take care of it like never before. Covid 19 is not just affecting our lungs but our minds too, a silent killer!
This is an era when our psychological well-being is under threat. So, this World Mental Health Day (10th October), let us look into why your psychological happiness is being challenged and what you should do about it.
Work-From-Home: Not as convenient as we thought
When WFH became a new norm, we were excited as we all thought that this would save us from physical exertions of travelling back and forth from the office. But unique problems accompany WFH-
Extra work causes burnout, meetings fixed at odd hours or just long hours of work
Juggling both household chores and office work
Parents have to make time to keep children entertained and handle their online classes too
If you are living with older people in the house, then their needs to be met too
Working from home is not peaceful and there are too many distractions
Constant fights with other members of the family, may be?
The ever-present stress of work overload and conflict is draining us. We feel helpless and misunderstood. This situation gives rise to depression – the silent killer.
Add to that the fear of catching COVID-19
Ever since the pandemic struck, we are constantly having social and print media on the effected people, statistic, even second wave and of how unstoppable it is. Millions have contracted it and far too many people have died. We may even have family, friends who have contracted it or lost their lives. We not only fear for our own safety, but also for the health of our parents, grandparents or children who are more vulnerable.
COVID-19 has also triggered financial difficulties for thousands of household with loss of jobs or reduced pay. So people are experiencing anxiety over how to make ends meet. The endless worrying over health and finances is another reason why so many people are witnessing depression.
How to make peace with this?
COVID-19 and WFH are here to stay until we have a vaccine. So, preserving our mental health is vital. Its not an easy situation But fortunately, there are a few things you can do to deal with all the factors that cause stress and depression-
1. While working from home, assign a separate room, your table and chair, which is to be out of bounds to everyone else, including children. Explain to everyone why a few hours of undisturbed peace are essential for work.
2. Organize your work area and let that be the only place you work. Never bring your laptop to your bed or dinning table.
2. Share household chores equally with other members of the family. This way everyone’s workload is equally distributed. Include young children to set up table, older ones in kitchen too.
3. Avoid fighting with your loved ones, everyone is stressed. When you are angry, breathe in deeply 10 times and your anger will disappear.
4. Exercise is beneficial at keeping stress away. The happy endorphins from exercising is much needed. Practice yoga and deep breathing every day.
5. Make a schedule for the week, meal time, time for a quick chat with your loved ones at home. Set an evening schedule too, go for a walk or just help pick up the phone to talk to a friend. Light a lamp, set an aroma infuser or play gentle music.
6. If you realize that you have clinical depression, DO NOT hesitate to seek therapy. Depression can destroy your life.
COVID-19 has affected everyone’s mental health. Talk to your loved ones about your fears and anxiety as that lessens the burden. We are all in it together and with proper caution, we will all emerge unhurt from this pandemic
Take charge, recognise your triggers and improve mental wellbeing
- Talk to someone you trust, connect with them
- Exercise regularly, enjoy those feel-good endorphins
- Focus on self care, you are precious