2020 was the beginning of an important decade for those in their 20s. Finally our future was unraveling in front of us. We would get to graduate school, kick ass in our new jobs , start our own businesses, do our masters, meet our husbands / wives, and get kids. There was so much hope and expectations for this decade. Personally I was thrilled ,unfortunately the ongoing pandemic slammed the door of our hopes. Corona virus welcomed itself into our lives , and currently we have to dance to the rhythm of anxiety, loneliness, stress, uncertainty , and insomnia. Suddenly there are lock downs curfews,closed businesses, unpaid leaves,social distancing ( which ought to be physical distancing) ,closed schools among many others.
Navigating this new norm feels like our dreams and hopes are being flushed down the drain. This can take a heavy toll on us mentally. Despite the challenges we are facing, we have to claim our mental health wellness. May , the month of mental health , calls us to be aware of the risks our mental health is exposed to. We are young . That alone makes us amazingly resilient .
Below are some tips to ensuring our mental health wellness:
- Create a routine ; include activities and hobbies that you are passionate about. Check your bucket list activities. If you cannot engage in them in doors , then this is an opportunity to learn something new. Dive into in door photography, cook new recipes, learn a new language ( currently am learning French on Duolingo app) , draw, rear chicken, and play a musical instrument among many others. Our creativity is being challenged and the key is to stretch our creativity horizon.
- Limit the time you spend obsessing on the news .WHO recommends us to watch Corona updates at most twice a day .Do not start engaging in life at 3 pm when CS Mutahi Kagwe is giving the Corona virus updates. Instead read more (currently am reading Love does by Bob Goff), and if you are not a fan of books try audio books while working or doing house chores
- EXERCISE! EXERCISE! EXERCISE! It is a step that jump – starts our bodies. You can check out work out videos on YouTube like walk away pounds by Leslie, or utilize TV workout programs like NTV work outs at 6.30 am, skip a rope at home .
- Check in on your friends through WhatsApp, text, zoom, telegram, Google Meet, Skype , or perhaps a phone call. Ask how they are doing and feeling as well as what they’ve been up to.
- Ensure you shower daily regardless of whether you are going somewhere or just staying at home. This helps to jump – start your body , and for ladies outchea do your make up by all means if it helps.
- Get quality sufficient sleep. Check out your recommended sleep duration according to National Sleep Foundation.
- Feed on nutritious foods regularly whenever possible. Avoid snacking on junk or sugary snacks when bored or stressed. Remember to drink enough water daily.
- If prayer is an important part of your life, stay connected with you church community through TV like Sunday Mass on KBC , YouTube ( I listen to Joel Osteen) , Video Chats, fasting , Live Streams ,and other social media platforms.
- Create a daily gratitude list for the things you have , which you have power over, rather than worrying about the things you don’t have .Set an alarm or reminder .
- Bask in the sun during sunny days at your home compound. Getting out reminds us that we are not stuck in our houses , and that soon we shall overcome this pandemic.
- When anxious , deep breathing while counting your breaths is a good place to start; this is a good dose of calmness and stillness. Taking walks and reducing caffeine intake can also help.
- If you need to talk to a friend or family member by all means do .You can also pay to get help that is a therapist.
We owe it ourselves to take care of our mental health. Feel free to engage in whichever mental health wellness activity that keeps you sane and hopeful during this season. Take it one day at a time. Remember this only a season and it shall come to pass. We shall overcome the pandemic and continue chasing after our dreams.
# taking charge of our mental health # spreading positivity # we are not alone # beat corona mentally #mental health awareness # claiming our mental health #dose of hope for our decade