We are all in uncharted territory. Kids are home from school, parents are working from home, and most of our usual activities are off-limits. While the specific stressors are unique to each individual, isolating at home creates strain and anxiety for everyone.
The behavioral health providers at Dakota Family Services offer 10 tips for maintaining the mental health of you and your family during this unusual time:
1. Forgive yourself. You’re doing the best you can, and that is worth celebrating.
2. Be flexible. Providing structure while allowing for flexibility in your schedule is A-OK!
3. Find virtual ways to connect with those you love—for you, your kids and other members of your family. As humans, we are wired to connect, so it’s important to connect while practicing social distancing. Use Facetime or one of the many other video apps to have virtual coffee dates, Happy Hours, playdates, game nights or family dinners. Be creative!
4. Maintain your regular sleep schedule, eat well and get dressed and ready for the day even if you are not leaving the house.
5. Identify things you are grateful for and when things seem hectic, focus on those things over which you have control.
6. Meditate for at least 15 minutes every day to help lower your stress and anxiety levels. Meditation is good for your physical, spiritual and emotional health.
7. Exercise daily, find ways to move your body and release tension. Yoga is a great option because it promotes relaxation and stress release. Search “free yoga” on YouTube and you’ll find many options for bringing yoga into your home.
8. Break up your day. Find tasks to break up your day and, where possible, change your environment for different activities.
9. Help others. If you’re not under strict isolation rules yourself, and you’re able to do so, find ways to support people in need by offering to run errands and collect supplies.
10. Fight boredom. Make the most of this opportunity to catch up on your reading and explore projects you have been putting off. Beat boredom by staying mentally and physically active.
Coronavirus anxiety is a real thing. If you need a little help making it through the day, Dakota Family Services has immediate teletherapy openings for coronavirus anxiety. Call 1-800-201-6495 to schedule an appointment.