Heart to Heart Journey

Self Lock-down and my Mental Health | A little heart to heart #15

Hey there my lovelies,

Welcome back to my Blog!

As we adapt more and more to this new lifestyle of self-lockdown / quarantine / self-isolation due to the corona virus outbreak, needless to say this new ‘lifestyle’ has been having a negative impact on my mental health and overall well-being!

The pandemic is causing stress mostly because I feel that the main problem is the unknown, and the uncertainty of all of this. I feel self-isolation weighs down on me mainly because it’s took away my freedom!

My biggest problem now is limbo status I am living in! The stress is spiking at different times and this will in return effect my mental health. Needless to say, panic attacks will be another side effect of this uncertain circumstances especially when you think of the bombardment of news that trigger excessive worrying.  It feels incredibly distressing. Anybody who has ever been anxious this feel like when you have to go the dentist – that’s how I feel all the time. It’s exhausting.

Of course, I do understand that by social distancing and going into isolation I am protecting myself and others with me but therein lies a reason to be concerned for my mental health. Social contact is such a fundamental human need, we suffer both mentally and physically without it.

You must be thinking – How can I be feeling this way, well truth be told it has been years that I have learnt to built this persona up in order to copy with something that has been happening in my life for the 5 years! It has not been easy especially when this thing has cause me severally outburst of anger and despair at the same.  True I do have a son that is the centre of my life and he has single handily grounded me for the past five years – I have been battling with myself not to lose all that I have managed to learn until now!

However I am refusing to let this take over more than it has already so I am kearning to practice some ‘Coping Mechanisms’ as follows:

A) Things to Remember 

1. This situation isn’t permanent. While I cannot determine a definitive time frame, this, too, shall pass. There are definitely better times ahead. Things will be normal again. Maybe a new normal, but normal nonetheless. I am seeking out the positive and try to focus on that. 

2. Limiting my news intake. The news can sometimes be disheartening and a direct detriment especially the fake new. I put a cap on how much news I watch and/or read. I can stay informed and still limit the amount of emotional stress you take on. Anxiety often comes from what we ingest.

3. Looking forward to the future. Mynew house hunt plan for life was halted since the start of COVID-19 and after social distancing I am thinking about my new life after this global pandemic, and I am planning it all as we speak – I look forward to make a difference for myself and my little one.

4. Practising gratitude. As much as possible I begin each day by being thankful. Starting each morning with a positive mind frame can work wonders when being constantly faced with anxiety. Don’t allow your day to begin before you start by appreciating the fact that you have another day.

B) Best Practices

1. Get some rest.  Since my sleeping patterns have drastically changed, I am prioritizing rest to stabilize my mental health. 

2. Have a daily routine.Ashard as it may seem I try to stick to my usual daily routine. I still create my daily schedule and try to stick to it as much as possible.

3. Take care of my physical health. This has been a great task for me I have taken to meditation as you know I do not train anything and I cannot seem to start even now however by taking a 15 minute meditation break I found it has worked wonders!

4. Go outside (safely). With social distancing in mind, I still make sure to go outside and get some fresh air. I take a walk to my grocery store next door to pick up some daily essentials, sit on my porch or my backyard and appreciate that moment.

5. Keep in touch. I am in a way lucky as we have not fully moved completely to WFH.  I visit the office to stay in touch with my co-workers and drop to mums to check up on my parents and my sister and reach out to all my friends very often..

In Conclusion

Facing these exceptional times such as forced home stay (even if due to entirely justifiable reasons), leads to loneliness, conceived either as a normal effect of isolation or an emotional response with significant less clinical dimensions.  The past few weeks have been emotionally exhausting for many of us. We’re all navigating in uncertain times weighed down by the fear of what may come. Coping with anxiety is something hundreds of millions of us deal with on a daily basis not now it is amplified. 

Dealing with anxiety, fear, loneliness, and countless other emotional burdens brought on by global panic is draining. Most of us have been mandated to stay home and avoid crowds of any kind, socially distancing ourselves from everyone and everything we hold dear. That means no family dinners, date nights, events or outings with friends, group workouts and yoga routines, and coffee shop meetups. These societal restrictions only mean one thing: more anxiety.

Limiting our social health while expanding upon the triggers that degrade our emotional health, anxiety can be a direct result of social distancing. Worrying about the well-being of our loved ones, where our next paycheck is going to come from, and the global well-being of all humans, is a weight none of us were quite ready to carry. This makes coping with anxiety all the more troublesome and scary. And yet, even with our disrupted routines, many of us still hold onto concerns around maintaining our work efficiencies or fitness goals – trying to find ways to control the situation. 

To say that heightened anxiety may linger for the time being is a huge understatement. With interpersonal exercises and digital social interaction, you can reduce stress and calm the triggers. We’re all in this together. All grappling with the same worries. We’re strong, resilient, compassionate, and anxiety no matter how overbearing it may sometimes seem – won’t beat us. 

This has been my story of the past weeks, it has not been easy however, I have found help through implementing the above measure and also talking it out with family, colleagues and friends, they know the struggles I am in right now and they guide me accordingly when I feel like I am in a dire place.

Stay safe.

Until next time,

XOXO
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