This a sponsored post by Ray of Hope Counseling Services. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.
No one would have thought we would have spent the better part of 2020 quarantined during a pandemic. I know for certain that I never pictured this as our reality when I said Happy New Year at midnight on 1/1/2020. We had just moved to Georgia right before the quarantine started. So it’s safe to say, nothing has been normal in our lives for some time. I’ve been quarantined with my four-year-old for months and definitely have been tempted to pull my hair a few times. I’m sure there are plenty of other military wives that can relate to this.
The pandemic has affected almost every aspect of life including social lives, financial stability, family, and last but certainly not least, mental health. Drastic lifestyle changes can be a trigger for mental health. It’s so important that during these times we are mindful of the triggers and avoid allowing any negative changes to our lives. Keep reading to learn how you can protect your mental health during a pandemic.
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How To Protect Your Mental Health During A Pandemic
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Enforce Your Boundaries
It can get so easy to prioritize everyone else’s feelings over your own. Your friend may feel like venting. Maybe your mom wants to talk about why you majored in dance 5 years ago. Your dad may be wondering when you’ll get married. Your sister may want you to stay on the phone and watch a show with her. If you’re not in a good place, prioritize your mental health. It’s okay to say not today. Sticking to your boundaries and protecting your mental health should be your 1st concern during the pandemic. With all the craziness going on, you must remain mentally strong to deal with whatever changes come along. You won’t be able to do that if you’re constantly relaxing your boundaries just to keep the peace with the people in your life.
Purchase Indoor Plants
You would be surprised how much caring for plants can improve your mood. There’s tons of research on it if you’d like to check it out. But, I’m speaking from personal experience. The quarantine plus the move to a new city away from my family took a toll on me earlier this year. Caring for indoor plants and watching them flourish from my TLC was a great distraction and coping method. Being quarantined during the pandemic doesn’t give us much change in our surroundings. Add some indoor plants to your home and your mental health will be better for it. Plus, they make amazing decor for the home. Who doesn’t like looking at something pretty?!
Know Your Triggers
Self-awareness is so important right now. You need to know what your triggers are so you can control your reactions. The last thing you want is to go off on someone because your landlord still hasn’t fixed your water and you have been bottling everything in. Knowing your triggers allow you to manage your day accordingly so that you’re not putting unnecessary stress on yourself. Whenever I’m triggered, I typically stay to myself for the remainder of the day to avoid any further stress. That may not work for you but it’s important to be aware of your triggers and handle them accordingly.
Maintain A Routine
At the beginning of the quarantine, I felt like a lab rat spinning on a wheel. The days kept going but each day was the same. It wasn’t until I created a routine that it gave me little breaks in the day and activities to look forward to. For example, I worked out in the morning which gave me an accomplished feeling to start the day. The afternoon during my son’s nap was spent gardening which was also self-care for me. When I organized my day like this, I wasn’t just laying in bed watching endless Netflix marathons.
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Talk With Someone
Choose a friend or family member as a check-in buddy that you feel comfortable venting to. This is especially important if you are quarantining by yourself during the pandemic. I’m the biggest advocate of spending time with yourself but everyone needs somebody. If you’re not comfortable opening up to your family or friends, then get a therapist or counselor. Don’t underestimate how freeing it is to be able to vent on what you’re going through without fear of judgment.
Ray of Hope Counseling
So many people think that therapy is for people with “something wrong with them” or for serious issues. But, therapy can actually be effective in dealing with your day-to-day life and temporary situations. This pandemic won’t last forever but the effects can be long-term if you don’t cope correctly with the stress and lifestyle adjustments. Ray of Hope Counseling Services is an amazing practice of counselors and psychotherapists in the Georgia area. Their dedication to making people feel better and finding the best coping mechanisms is why I would recommend them as an option for anyone in the area. It’s hard taking the first step of seeking help and Ray of Hope Counseling Services rewards this by providing help with an open mind.
Don’t think that Ray of Hope Counseling Services only provides individual counseling. If the pandemic has put a strain on your marriage or family, you can seek marital and family counseling to aid in protecting your mental health. Ray of Hope Counseling Services takes pride in providing care that helps, heals, and strengthens individuals and their families. There are a bunch of locations throughout Georgia. Go to their website and search the site for your nearby location. For example, “therapy Peachtree City“.
Get A Hobby
Don’t underestimate the importance of having a hobby during the pandemic. A while back, I started doing crafts such as making holiday wreaths. What started as something to do for the blog ended up being a hobby that brought me peace. Peace is crucial to protecting your mental health. The amount of hobbies you may be able to try is limited due to social distancing rules. Yet, there is something for everyone. Try to find some indoor friendly hobbies that don’t require much contact with others. This will help you protect your mental health during a pandemic and make the best of the limited options we have.
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“Protect Your Mental Health During A Pandemic” Recap
I know surviving quarantine during the pandemic isn’t a walk in the park. I could only imagine how the essential workers have been coping during the pandemic knowing the risk they take every day. Whether you’re quarantined or on the frontlines, these tips to protect your mental health during a pandemic are relevant. Always put your mental health first and take your time responding to the chaos of the pandemic to protect your sanity.
Until Next Time,