We are all well into our second year dealing with the impact of COVID-19, and the disease now has new variants which means that life is far from returning to normal.
In order to protect ourselves and those around us from becoming sick, most of us are continuing to distance ourselves socially, wear masks, wash our hands, and make an appointment to become vaccinated.
Though we are doing what we can to slow the spread, the impact of COVID-19 on mental health continues to be a concern.
Individuals, families, and businesses alike are still struggling to grow accustomed to the lifestyle changes that were imposed on us by social distancing regulations.
In 2021, many parents are still having to play the role of teachers in their homes as well, which is further complicated by the need to work and organize home space in order to accommodate everyone.
Take a look at the following mental health tips provided by our therapists at Evergreen Counseling to get you through the second year of COVID-19.
COVID-19 Mental Health Tips for Year Two
Like many others in your situation, you may be struggling with feelings of isolation, stress, and sadness.
You may feel that you have no time to enjoy yourself, and being cooped up in your home may be making you stir-crazy.
Working from home, schooling from home, and trying to find entertaining outlets at home are weighing heavily on everyone in this situation.
Try a few of the mental health tips listed below in order to relieve some of the stress and overwhelm you’re experiencing in 2021.
- Practice self-compassion. We have all heard of self-care, which is crucial, but self-compassion is a necessary and often neglected element in a self-care routine. Hold yourself accountable, but don’t be unnecessarily hard on yourself when you’re struggling to adapt to the demands in your life. Treat yourself with the same kindness you give to others. – Miriam Campion
- Try a new activity with your loved one. Whether this is your partner or children, try a new activity that you can partake in at the end of the day to relieve some of the stress you’re feeling. Whether this is enjoying a couple of episodes of a TV show together or trying a new game, embark on something you can enjoy together. – Jonathan Wolfrum
- Go outside. Even if you only get a few minutes outdoors each day, make the most of it. Notice the different goings-on in nature, from birds in the trees to the smell of grass, maybe even count the stars or take a long look at the moon. Fresh air can help relieve some of the negative feelings that arise from being confined to your home. – Charis Stiles
- Take time to regroup. Remember that the coping strategies you used for Year One might not be the same strategies you need for Year Two. Research ways to diversify your resources and frame the pandemic in your mind as being partially over, something that occurs in steps or sections. Much like a marathon, you can’t simply blast through the entire ordeal without taking breaks and recharging. – Annie Wright
- Be mindful of the news and its impact on your mental health. While it’s great to be informed about what’s going on in the world around you, it’s also important to be aware of how the news affects your well-being. If you find that you’re more stressed after absorbing news, limit your exposure to the upsetting articles you’re reading. It’s good to be aware of your surroundings news-wise, but if the news is making you terribly anxious, it isn’t doing you any good. – Debby Liang
- Say “no” sometimes. There is already so much expected of you while you’re adapting to the changes in your life, so it’s okay to admit when something is too much for you to deal with. It could be something as small as a depressing conversation you don’t want to have, or an area you don’t feel safe visiting. You’re allowed (and encouraged) to say “no” when you need to. – Aja Johnson
What if I need more help this year than I did last year?
Again, you are far from being alone in the way you feel.
One year of COVID-19 was hard enough for most people, and facing another year of it may feel like too much to handle with the resources you used in Year One.
A highly valuable mental health tip is seeking therapy if you have not already done so.
Therapy can be a great resource when it comes to managing your stress levels and developing healthy new habits in your everyday life.
A licensed therapist is equipped to handle all sorts of life struggles, and even though it may feel like everyone is going through the same things, your experience is unique in its own right.
If you’d like to seek support for your mental health needs during Year Two of COVID-19, you’re welcome to contact our offices as soon as you’re ready. We’ve helped many people struggling with their mental health, and we would be honored to help you, too.
Please feel free to reach out to us to set up a complimentary consult call so we can match you with the best therapist for your situation.