Coronavirus Insanity: Self-Care Tips To Help You Stay Mentally Well
By Samantha Steiner & Amy Phillips
Almost everyone has heard of the dreaded Coronavirus (COVID-19) by now. When I checked my local news website a few days ago the total cases for this virus in Pennsylvania were at 76 infected victims.
In PA, Governor Tom Wolf decided to shut down all non-essential businesses in this state in order to prevent further spreading of the Coronavirus. He seriously wants us Pennsylvanians to stay in our homes 24 hours a day. That’s just insane!
Stores are closing down, grocery stores are crazy af, and basic necessities are being sold out. It’s almost impossible to find milk, bread, toilet paper, Lysol, hand sanitizer, and so on. Everyone is running around like it’s the end of the world.
This virus outbreak can cause anyone to lose their sanity amidst all this insanity. Continue reading to see some helpful self-care tips that help keep you sane; especially if you’re stuck at home!
Self-Care Tips To Help Stay Mentally Well During The Coronavirus Outbreak
Stay Calm & Clean
Try taking a relaxing bubble bath or refreshing shower to help you relax and wind down. Plus, bathing can help you wash away any unwanted germs.
Always remember to take all your medication around the same time everyday and to take your meds as prescribed. It can help you stay stable to a certain degree.
Keep in mind that meds are only half the battle to staying stable. YOU have to put in some work such as going to therapy and utilizing coping mechanisms.
Do not isolate yourself even if you are unable to leave your house. You can video chat with your loved ones. You can also call, text, or use social media.
However, because of all the crazy news on social media that can slowly drain your sanity, limit how much time you spend on these platforms.
While we’re being told to stay 6 feet away from other people because of this virus, try giving yourself a hug while saying positive affirmations about yourself. Show YOU some love!
Practice Coping Techniques
The best time to practice coping techniques is when you are stable or at baseline. This way when you need to utilize them they are already in your mind.
Journaling, creating poetry, or other forms of expressive writing can be great ways to help you express yourself and release your emotions which is beneficial for your mental health! Don’t hold your feelings in; make sure to get them out!
Creative writing, doing arts and crafts, coloring, painting, drawing, or even finding a new hobbie or participating in a favorite hobby are only a few ways that you can express yourself creatively. Creativity and artistic expression are great ways to keep yourself busy and your mind preoccupied during the Coronavirus outbreak and beyond.
If you have any furbabies try to spend some time with them. Cuddle with them, show them some love, and play with them. Pets can be very therapeutic and beneficial for your mental health.
If you don’t have any furbabies watch some funny or cute videos of adorable animals that can make you laugh or feel good.
Get Enough Sleep
Getting enough sleep is very important and a vital part to maintaining stability. It is recommended to get at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep a night. It is important that you don’t get too much or too little sleep at night. Sleep deprivation can severely impact your mood and not for the best.
Avoid Drugs & Alcohol
Right now, most states have closed down the bars and liquor stores because of COVID-19. It is best to try to limit or preferably avoid using drugs and alcohol for the sake of your mental health.
Alcohol is a depressant therefore if you’re already freaking out about the Coronavirus you’re more likely to feel worse mentally.
If you are addicted to alcohol or drugs and are going through withdrawal or need assistance finding information about substance abuse help and live in the United States you can contact SAMHSA’s National Helpline by calling 1-800-622-HELP (4357).
Practicing proper hand hygiene has always been important but during these times it is even more important.
Don’t forget to also use lotion so that your hands don’t dry out!
Meditation can help you clear your mind and relax your mind and body. Click Here for simple meditations to try!
Create A Schedule For Youself
It is a great idea to create a schedule for yourself so that you have some structure, especially if you are stuck at home and are going out of your mind with boredom.
Find things that you like to do on a daily basis such as hobbies, journaling, mood tracking, reading, etc… and incorporate them into your schedule.
Track Your Mood
Creating a mood chart to help you track your moods can help you better understand yourself. You can also see if there are any patterns with your moods. You can even show it to your psychiatrist or therapist so that they can see where your at and help you better.
If you need an idea of what you could do to create your own mood tracker or if you want to use a tracker that I created you can find it here:
Read or Watch TV/Movies
Reading or watching TV or movies is a great way to escape reality for a little while. It can take your mind off of what’s going on in the world for a little. Read/watch something new, catch up on shows, or read/watch your all time favorite book/movie.
Start A Blog
Blogging is a great way to help express yourself and release emotions. For some people, blogging is like interactive journaling. For others, they can blog about their interests or hobbies.
If you would like to start your own blog, WordPress is a great place to start. Click Here to get started!
Stay Safe Everyone!!
For more tips on how to stay mentally well during the pandemic, check out Amy’s post for Part 2!
Samantha is the author of "My Bipolar Mind: You're not alone," she is also a freelance writer, blogger, and mental health advocate who runs and manages her own mental health blog MyBipolarMind.com.