We are hardwired to like predictability. Our brains consume so much energy that it’s easier to have control factors in place.
Right now, a lot of things feel outside of our control.
We are forced to make tough decisions, re-evaluate how we live, and face a future we never before imagined.
If you feel anxious, overwhelmed, exhausted, or any of the number of feelings we can feel…
… I want you to know it’s normal. And you are not alone.
One of the most crucial health factors that need our attention right now is our mental wellbeing.
Even the smallest steps can make a huge difference in your overall health.
Here are 4 simple things to implement that will help support your mental wellbeing right now:
Practice the big 3: sleep, exercise, and good nutrition.
Get into the habit of a regular bedtime routine. Go to bed at the same time every night. No blue light in your room up to an hour before you fall asleep. Journal before you go to sleep if you can’t turn your brain off. Write a to-do list for the following day if you feel overwhelmed about task management.
Daily exercise can be as simple as a brisk walk, or as structured as a fitness class. And though it may feel good at the moment to comfort yourself with not-so-health food and alcohol, eating well is incredible for your mental wellness.
Manage expectations. Sure, we all thought we’d have a personal Rennaisance during our shelter in place. But that’s not the case for many. It’s ok to lower the bar for yourself right now. Your productivity may be down. You may feel distracted, have low motivation, or feel emotionally overloaded. Give yourself some time to adapt. Be kind to yourself. And get done what you can without judgment.
Know your triggers. We all have a threshold, and it may be a bit shorter than it was previously. So it’s essential to realize what triggers an adverse reaction that may drain your energy. Set boundaries for yourself that protect your mental wellbeing. Some things that will help:
- Limit exposure to news and social media
- Avoid energy-zapping interactions (as much as you can)
- Take time to meditate and practice breathing exercises
- Invest time in your hobbies
- Ask for support and don’t try to do everything yourself
Stay connected. Self-isolation can undoubtedly take its toll, and it’s easy to disconnect from people we love. But now more than ever, it’s important to stay connected to friends and family. Even a simple text to let someone know you are thinking about them will go a long way.
Above all, don’t be afraid to seek help if you are struggling. There is no shame in getting support from a licensed healthcare provider or local support group. The sooner you reach out to someone, the quicker you can begin your healing journey.