When the storm comes, as they tend to do, I put my mental health first aid into place. This is how I coped in the past during stressful moments, and it might be helpful for you, too.
1. I feed my body and soul well through eating well and exercising. At some point in the day, I take time for meditation, yoga, or other exercises. You can find tons of free online videos to get your moving.
2. I connect with people. Since we are not able to get together in person, find your online spaces that are offering support right now. Avoid the ones that fuel hysteria or post things that are not from reliable sources.
3. Routines: This doesn’t work for everyone, but most people and children thrive on routines. In times of stress, one of the most comforting things is a routine. A good morning routine could start with a shower, making your bed, and having breakfast.
4. Positive self-talk. I reminded myself that no matter what happens in this world – I am never alone & this too will pass. We are isolated, but we are not alone. This moment is hard, but it will pass.
5. Look for the good stuff. Look for the good news, the places who are doing well, the people who survived. I was comforted by the fact that Wuhan, the centre of the virus, closed the emergency hospitals that were set up because there are not enough new cases to sustain them. This means this is manageable and containable. https://www.businessinsider.com/wuhan-medical-workers-remove-masks-after-last-temporary-hospital-closes-2020-3
It is important to have a routine and self-care plan in place for when life happens, and we have tough moments because they will happen, and they tend to be unexpected. It makes it so much easier to bounce back and not be consumed by whatever challenge we are facing when we have a plan in place, especially if you are vulnerable to a mental health challenge.
While most people are setting up homeschooling schedules for the time off, I’m setting up routines that helps our family cope through this period of uncertainty. I’d love to hear about any tips or resources that you have to share.