COVID-19 has had a devastating effect on many of us. While the physical impacts can be easy to observe, the emotional impact is often hidden. Over the last year, many people have experienced an increase in depression, anxiety, panic attacks, trauma, and substance abuse. The need to socially distance or quarantine away from others has contributed to the mental health issues that many people are struggling with. To help minimize the impact of social distancing on mental health, we have listed some steps that you can take to help you manage these difficult times.
- Join a Support Group – Support groups can help decrease the sense of isolation that is a part of the age of the coronavirus. Fortunately, the internet allows you to remain connected if you are not able to attend support groups in person. Examples of support groups include small groups at church, AA, Depression support groups, and Bipolar support groups. One source to find mental health support groups at www.nami.org.
- Stay in Regular Contact with Family and Friends – Don’t lose contact with those people who are important to you. Reach out to them via online chat, phone calls, texts, emails, or letters.
- Join an Online Community – The internet can provide you with an opportunity to join a variety of online communities. There are forums/communities for virtually every interest. Take some time to search the communities that are available and find one that matches your needs and interests.
- Take an Online Class – Maybe now is a good time to learn something new. There are a variety of online classes that are now available. Whether it is learning a new language or learning how to build your own computer, there is a class that is available to you. Who knows, you may even begin to develop new connections with other people who share your interests.
- Develop a New Hobby – Hobbies occupy your time and attention. Time often flies when you are engaged in a hobby that you enjoy. In addition, hobbies can also create opportunities to network with others who share your interests.
- Learn a New Skill – Learning to play the guitar or cook new types of food can be a great way to spend your time alone. It can also open you up to new online communities that share your newly learned skills.
- Complete That Project You Have Been Putting Off – The time quarantined at home can give you the opportunity to finish those projects that you always told yourself that you would do one day. Maybe today is that day.
- Immerse Yourself in a Good Book – Good literature can bring you into new worlds. Find a good book to read.
- Develop an Exercise Routine – Don’t just sit around waiting for things to change. Now is a good time to work on improving yourself. Exercise has enormous benefits for both the mind and the body.
- Talk with a Therapist – If you begin to feel depressed and anxious due to the isolation, find a good therapist to work with. They can help you work through your feelings and help you develop coping strategies to manage the stressors that you are dealing with.
New Dimensions Can Help!
If you or someone you know is experiencing any of the above symptoms or problems, New Dimensions can help. Our team of experienced therapists and psychiatrists can help you overcome these challenges and help you develop the skills you need to thrive. To schedule a complementary assessment or to find out more about our programs, contact us at 1-800-685-9796.
Our affiliate, MHThrive, provides Individual Therapy, Couples and Marriage Counseling, and Family Therapy at our locations in Katy, The Woodlands, and the Clear Lake area of Houston, Texas. We also provide telehealth therapy for anyone who resides within the State of Texas. To schedule an appointment with one of the MHThrive therapists, contact us at 713-477-0333 or visit www.mhthrive.com to learn more.