The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in the disruption of our lives in an unprecedented manner. Not only has it taken a toll on millions of lives worldwide but also led to the widespread loss of jobs and income. The cumulative effect of these impacts has sharply driven up the stress on mental health and made people fearful, anxious, angry, and even depressed. According to Huffington Post, forced social distancing has magnified loneliness, while uncertainty has led to stress and anxiety. While it may take a long time to recover from the adverse impact on our mental health, there are a few things we can do to cope better. Some insights:
Meditate Regularly to Control Stress from Taking Over
Meditating daily can be useful for controlling pandemic-induced stress and anxiety. It is better to incorporate it into your schedule even before you start feeling any adverse effect on your mental health. Numerous studies certify the beneficial effects of meditation on emotional health. One theory suggests that meditation helps to increase the power of the brain to process information while another observes that it slows down the aging process of the brain cells. If you don’t know how to meditate, you can use one of the many smartphone apps or mental health improvement tools.
Get a Load of Fresh Air to Reduce Stress, Recommends Sarahbeth Hartlage
As vital as social distancing is, it is possible to stay safe by going outdoors and taking care to avoid the crowds. Basking in the sun can not only be great for reducing the level of cortisol, the hormone that causes stress but also encourages the generation of vitamin D by the body. By spending time outdoors to connect with nature, you can reduce your level of anxiety, frustration, and fear of the uncertain, as well as the sense of confusion, anger, and depression. Perform light exercises, drink a cup of tea, work on your laptop under the shade of a tree, or taking your phone calls while strolling in the backyard can make a lot of difference to your mental balance.
Exercise Regularly to Up the Happiness Quotient
Even though the effect of exercising is more apparent on your physical health, there is a big impact too on your mental health, observes Sarahbeth Hartlage. You can walk briskly, jog, cycle, swim, perform aerobic exercises, lift weights or even do yoga to improve your metabolism and mental balance. The boost in your mood has been attributed to the release of endorphins caused by working out. According to research, by exercising regularly, you can not only be in better physical shape but also make yourself more resilient to stress and anxiety. By being physically active, you are also less prone to depression. The great thing is that when done properly, there are no adverse side effects of exercising.
As important as meditation, going outdoors, and exercising are, no discussion on overall health, including mental wellbeing, can be complete without considering the impact of sleep. It is only when you get an adequate and restful sleep that you can be free of stress, anxiety, mood swings, fatigue, and burnout.