Coping with isolation in the COVID-19 pandemic is a challenge. But there are steps you can take to manage your mental health & well-being.
- Be in the present: Take each day as it comes and focus on the things you can control. Mindfulness and meditation can be great tools.
2. Stay connected: Even though introverts may be having a field day in isolation, they need some sense of connection to others for their mental as well as physical health. Many working groups have created virtual forums where you can contribute or just sit back and enjoy the chatter. We are in social isolation, but we need not feel alone. You can join our buddy program. Basically, when you become a buddy, you are committing to making a new friend and having an accountability partner. You can stay connected & make a difference today by signing up.
3. Self care is important: Moments of feeling overwhelmed often come with big thoughts, such as “I cannot deal,” or “This is hard.” This pandemic will cause a lot of stress, and it may be impossible to be our best selves all the time. But we can ask for help or reach out when help is asked of us. Be compassionate with yourself and with others.
4. Establishing routines may help with anxiety. Find something to do that is not work and is not virus-related that brings you joy. Working in short periods of time with breaks in-between will help.
5. Manage your expectations: This is definitely not the kind of break you were looking for. A lot of people say that the quarantine might be the best opportunity to be productive. Because of this, there’s the tendency to have overbearing expectations. But difficulty concentrating, low motivation and a state of distraction are to be expected, especially in the face of this pandemic. So go easy on yourself. As we settle into this new rhythm of remote work and isolation, we need to be realistic in the goals we set, both for ourselves and others.
I know this is a stressful time for all of us. But by practicing these mental-health and well-being hacks, we can protect ourselves and those around us.