Monitoring Your Mental Health During A Global Pandemic
Just as we thought things were getting back to some form of new normal, news breaks that the UK is now experiencing a second wave of Coronavirus. Just as you had got yourself in the mindset of going back to the office, you’re now being told to stay home.
All this change and uncertainty is difficult to cope with, and struggling with your mental health, as a result, is very common and nothing to be ashamed of. The last six months or so have been exceptionally challenging to different people in different ways.
“We are all in the same storm, but we are not all in the same boat”.
Some have lost jobs and therefore are stressed about finances, some are concerned about the stability of their job once furlough ends, or they’re worried about financial stability due to being self-employed. Others are finding it overwhelming to work from home whilst looking after children, and checking in on relatives. And sadly, some are just trying to keep their heads above water whilst grieving for a loved one who became another Covid-19 victim. There has been so much uncertainty across the world due to the Coronavirus outbreak, with the effects stretching far beyond the physical disease itself.
Did you know 1 in 5 now experience symptoms of depression as opposed to 1 in 10 this time last year?
This figure is no surprise to us given the amount of change in the world since the announcement of lockdown back in March. Feelings of anxiety, depression, heightened stress and grief are all challenging emotions and very common during this time. You may have never struggled with your mental health before, but are now experiencing new unpleasant feelings due to the state of the world.
We want you to know that it’s normal to be struggling during a global pandemic. It’s normal to feel anxious about the uncertainty that lies ahead. It’s normal to feel low about restrictions, and it’s normal to be stressed about finances.
But when is it time to get help? We want to highlight that it’s time to seek help for these emotions when they start to affect your everyday life. If simple tasks become difficult, if you’re overwhelmed with thoughts and emotions and find it hard to not spiral out of control with them, then CBT therapy could be an effective solution.
Feeling low during this time doesn’t mean you have depression, feeling on edge doesn’t mean you have an anxiety disorder. So whether you have a mental health disorder or not, therapy can be extremely beneficial to get you unstuck from that negative place.
“The proportion of young people aged 18-24 reporting suicidal thoughts or feelings during the pandemic was 22%, which was more than double that of the population as a whole, at 10%.” – mentalhealth.org.uk
Young adults have been especially badly hit during the pandemic with a triple whammy of curtailed education, diminished job prospects and reduced social contact with peers. It’s also deeply affected the older generation with reported feelings of loneliness due to isolation and missing the human connection of family members, which is crucial to one’s mental health. This just shows the scale of the mental health worries that are being experienced during this pandemic, but we are here to help.
Here’s some things you can do to monitor and look after your mental health:
- Limit your exposure to the news / social media, obtain information from trusted sites. (https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus)
- Develop a balanced daily routine, be mindful not to work all the time just because you’re at home.
- Allow yourself to feel the negative emotions, it’s understandable and it’s OK, don’t judge yourself for it.
- Stay connected with friends and family members.
- Maintain physical health by going out for regular walks or exercising when you can.
- Consider mindfulness and relaxation techniques for when you’re feeling overwhelmed.
- Seek professional help if you are struggling to cope.
How we can help support you during COVID-19:
- Online therapy – we can offer one-to-one therapy delivered through Skype, FaceTime or via telephone.
- Self-guided therapy – Access an online portal that will allow you to work through your problems whenever suits you, anytime, anywhere.