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Is all really well? Mental Health during the COVID crisis

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Is all really well? Mental Health during the COVID crisis

Just when we thought we had it all under control and were reaching the lag end of this monstrous virus, we were hit with the much deadlier second wave of COVID-19. Since then we’ve gone on to receive the disfavored position of the country with the highest cases. While the virus itself can be quite agonizing, the effect it has had on people affected, those taking care of affected people and the general public, is a whole different predicament to deal with. 

With news of the new strain of the virus being a deadlier version making its rounds, it’s normal to feel anxious and helpless about everything. And now that most of our cities are mostly shut, lockdown fatigue is a real thing! As social beings, all of this distancing from our loved ones can have a toll on our mental, emotional and physical health. 

But is there a cure to this? Another vaccine perhaps? Obviously, the idea of having the luxury of meeting and hugging loved ones sounds divine, but maybe we can look at some realistic solutions. 

  1. Keep a limit on your screen time, especially social media: It’s been heartening to see how citizens joined hands together to find various resources for COVID patients; really showed the beauty behind humanity. However, sometimes it can feel like a bit much. With the news, WhatsApp forwards, social media and other forms of digital communication being flooded with COVID - related news can put us in an endless loop of negativity and despair. Limiting time on the internet can help strike the right balance.
  2. Helping out with the little things: watching our healthcare being burdened with an overload of cases and several families scrambling to find beds, oxygen cylinders and other supplies for the affected, can leave us feeling helpless and eagerly wishing we could something to help out. Start with small things like checking in on elderly neighbours to see if they need help with groceries and other essentials. Check in on friends and acquaintances who’re isolating and thank the essential workers around you like medical staff, domestic help, the milkmen, workers at grocery stores and others who enable us to lead our lives. 
  3. Donate for a cause: Thousands of families from lower socioeconomic backgrounds have been affected by this deadly virus without the means to afford proper medical healthcare for the same. Even the smallest amount donated to such people can make a credible difference for several families. Some amazing organisations that enable such meaningful donations are Ketto India, Give India, Milaap and more. Helping affected people with a meal can really go a long way in helping them heal too. Check out the list of COVID - 19 resources to help people in our Instagram guide here.
  4. Take some time off: Over the years, the hustle culture has made us all forget the importance of a healthy work-life balance. It can get hard to focus and be productive while people around us struggle to even breathe! Take some time off from college, work or any project you might be working on to help give your mind the space it needs to come to terms with the current situation. Check out this list of resources curated on our handle for mental health services in these times. Don’t be hard on yourself at a time like these. We will all bounce back - wiser and stronger. Until then, keep calm and stay hydrated.
  5. Take it one day at a time: Psychologists at Harvard University conducted a study on people’s attention while performing a particular task and found out that being distracted from the task at hand consistently makes a person less happy. Even daydreaming about pleasant situations doesn’t help. Living in the moment and being fully engaged on the task at hand really does help increase one’s happiness levels as we learn to find joy in the little things.

All these tips may seem simple and obvious to many. But practising this on a daily basis can really make a difference to our mental well and enables us to be of even better help to the people around us; remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup. 

Remember, you can’t pour from an empty cup. 

As we develop some resilience through this crisis, let us also remember to continue being empathetic and kind to each other and always look to keep the beautiful spark of humanity alive, even when we get back to our busy lives.

 

Written by: Reshma Bhat