COVID-19 quickly transformed the way people engage with one another. Public health officials have urged social distancing, wearing a face mask, and other protective measures to guard against the spread of the coronavirus. To comply with these measures, people may physically distance themselves from family members, friends, and others. They may also experience extreme fear of getting infected by the coronavirus or inadvertently infecting someone they know.
As the pandemic moves forward, people must adapt accordingly. When people safely adapt to the new normal, they can better manage — and even improve — their mental health and overall wellbeing.
Tips for How to Improve Your Mental Health and Adjust to the New Normal
Should the coronavirus pandemic be causing mental health issues that make it difficult to function, it is important to seek medical treatment. A doctor can evaluate a patient — in-person or via telemedicine — and offer a personalized treatment recommendation to reduce or even eliminate mood disorder symptoms.
Along with meeting with a doctor, there are several things that people can do on their own to help manage and improve their mental health in the new normal. These include:
1. Get Sufficient Rest
A good night’s sleep can go a long way toward helping people feel their best. Strive to get seven to nine hours of sleep each night. Additionally, try to go to bed and wake up at the same times each day. This can help build a consistent sleep routine that allows for waking up feeling refreshed and being ready to seize the day, every day.
2. Develop a Daily Routine
Creating and following a daily routine can deliver mental health benefits. A daily routine can include consistent times for eating meals, exercising, and working or studying. This routine can provide people with predictability and help them feel in control of their everyday lives. It can also result in feeling more relaxed, even in the midst of the pandemic.
3. Prioritize Daily Goals
Establish daily goals and work toward achieving bigger aspirations over an extended period of time. By creating daily goals, people may be able to distinguish what’s most important to them and plan accordingly. Daily goals can also give people a sense of purpose, which may prove to be vital during the pandemic. Of course, if people fail to achieve their goals in a given day, try not to panic. Keep in mind that Rome was not built in a day. Much in that same vein, establish realistic expectations while adjusting to the new normal.
4. Engage in Regular Exercise
Walking, swimming, strength training, yoga, and other forms of exercise may improve mood and reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety. Even a few minutes of exercise each day can make a big difference relative to mental health and overall wellbeing. Before you begin an exercise regimen, meet with a doctor to determine how to incorporate various exercises into your everyday routine safely.
5. Maintain a Healthy Diet
Let’s face it — the temptation to eat excess amounts of fatty snacks, sugary sweets, and other unhealthy foods may be overwhelming, especially as we are finding ourselves a bit bored at home. However, eating foods loaded with vitamins, minerals, and nutrients tend to help people feel more physically and mentally well. Dedicate time to preparing healthy meals that are both delicious and healthy as you let your creativity in the kitchen run wild.
6. Keep in Touch with Family Members and Friends
Family members and friends are still available during the pandemic, and engaging with them may be more important now than ever before. Remember, the pandemic may have physically separated family members and friends, but phone and video chats make it simple to keep in touch. As a result, you and your loved ones can get through the pandemic and support each other as you adjust to the new normal.
7. Take a Break from the News
News outlets provide frequent COVID-19 news updates, which can lead to information overload that causes people to feel overwhelmed. If you are experiencing stress, anxiety, or depression caused by news relating to the pandemic, take a break. Rather than watching the news for long stretches of time, try to enjoy a funny TV show or movie. Alternatively, reading a book, listening to music, or engaging in a hobby can provide a valuable break from the 24/7 coronavirus news cycle.
8. Stay Away from Alcohol and Tobacco
Excessive alcohol consumption can make it exceedingly difficult to cope with depression, anxiety, and other mood disorder symptoms. Plus, tobacco increases the risk of lung disease, and is known to be highly addictive. Alcohol and tobacco are not solutions to manage or improve mental health issues, even in the middle of the pandemic. They should be carefully monitored or even avoided during this challenging time. Instead, explore healthy alternatives for coping with stress, like exercise or finding new hobbies.
9. Focus on the Positives
The pandemic has caused many people around the world to feel hopeless, helpless, and sad at different times. These feelings can make it tough to function, and they may hamper people’s ability to be the best versions of themselves. If negative feelings crop up, it may be beneficial for people to make a list of things they love or appreciate. This list may help people maintain a positive outlook, even in the most challenging times.
10. Be Kind to Yourself
People are trying their best to adapt to the new normal, but there may be significant challenges along the way. For people who are struggling to adjust to changes as the pandemic continues, it may be helpful to practice self-care. Simple self-care activities like soaking in a bubble bath or meditating may help people improve their mood. Everyone’s self-care routine will look different, but over time they can help alleviate symptoms of stress, anxiety, and other mood disorders.
How to Improve Your Mental Health with Support from Achieve TMS
Achieve TMS is the nation’s leading provider of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy. We recognize the challenges associated with the coronavirus pandemic and the new normal. We are here to help people coping with depression, anxiety, and other mood disorders manage and improve their mental health symptoms going forward.
Our revolutionary TMS therapy is designed to help patients reduce or fully mitigate their depressive symptoms. TMS involves the use of 20-minute therapy sessions held five days a week for six weeks, with no electrical shocks, anesthesia, or medication required. Upon completion of our treatment program, patients may alleviate their mood disorder symptoms.
For those considering TMS, we are available to discuss the treatment and its benefits. To learn more or schedule a therapy consultation, please contact us online, call, or text us today at 877-257-3193.