Mental health has always been a serious concern, but it’s recently catapulted to top priority as more and more people are concentrating on self-care. Why? The current COVID-19 pandemic is making us all reevaluate ourselves and our situations.
Maybe it’s because we’re locked indoors and forced to battle our internal demons. Maybe it’s because we miss our friends and coworkers. Regardless of the cause, mental health has never been more important - and respected - than now.
According to mentalhealth.gov:
“Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices."
Good mental health is crucial because it affects our lives on a grand scale. COVID-19 is an unprecedented time of uncertainty and many of us do feel “off.” So how do we get back to normal?
Thankfully, there are many ways to control and improve your mental being, even during the COVID-19 pandemic. That's why we put together:
19 mental health hacks to try out ASAP
1. Connect with someone
You should strive to connect with someone daily. Facetime a friend, call your mom, hug your roommate, or cuddle your dog. Human connection - even virtual - is necessary for positive mental health.
2. Create a media bubble
Consume the media and news that fits your needs. Don’t feel pressured to monitor the news 24/7 if it’s affecting you negatively. Create a safe space to check for important updates and turn off the news after.
3. Practice mindfulness
You don’t need to be a monk to practice mindfulness. It’s just about being in the moment - something all of us could benefit from. Try to be present in one activity a day. Like, don’t wear headphones during your walk and observe what’s around you instead.
4. Write a gratitude list
There are so many reasons to be thankful, despite COVID-19. For positive mental health, jot down a simple gratitude list to visualize all the great things going for you. There’s more than you think!
5. Experiment with meditation
Classic meditation isn’t for everyone, but quieting the mind should be. Download a free meditation app or listen to music and get lost in the lyrics. Just clear your mind of personal thoughts and let it be free.
6. Track your mental health journey
Use a habit tracking app or journal to track your mood each day. It’s valuable to notice patterns or trends in your mental state so you can address low points.
7. Have a solo dance party
Who cares if you have two left feet. Now is the time to learn that Slave 4 U choreography and dance like no one’s watching - because no one is.
8. Journal your feelings
There’s a beauty to good ol’ pen and paper. Unplug and try journaling as another way to calm your mind. Don’t know what to write? There are countless journal prompts online, or just write about your day!
9. Introduce CBD
CBD is a miracle supplement that’s taking over the world, and for good reason. It promotes both physical pain and anxiety relief. Introduce CBD into your routine through edible supplements or beauty products, like CBDetox.
10. Cook a new recipe
Bring out your inner Gordon Ramsey and try a new recipe. Apps like Magic Fridge help inspire creative recipe ideas from the random ingredients from your pantry.
11. DIY spa treatments
Who needs a fancy spa to reap the beauty benefits? Relax your mind and body with these simple, DIY beauty treatments.
12. Rearrange the furniture
Whether you believe in the benefits of feng shui or not, it’s fun to rearrange your place. Plus, it’s a great workout.
13. Grow a plant
You can connect to nature even indoors. Buy a plant and instantly feel your room liven up. Better yet, some plants naturally purify the air.
14. Add in some adaptogens
Adaptogens have just recently become popular, but have been an ancient health remedy for ages. Try adding some to your supplement lineup to reap extra health benefits.
15. Break a sweat
To quote Elle Woods: “Working out gives you endorphins, and endorphins make you happy.” It’s true! Find a fun way to break a sweat and let the stress drip out of you.
16. Make a mood board
What better time to set some goals or dream of the future? Collect a few old magazines and cut out pictures and words that inspire you. Hang it up by your desk or in your bathroom to motivate you every day.
17. Watch a Ted Talk
Netflix was cool for the first few weeks of confinement. Now, not even Tiger King can soothe us. Change things up and stream a TedTalk instead to challenge your mind and learn something new.
18. Be creative
Let your mind wander and be creative. Think outside the box, color outside the lines, and bring our your inner child with a craft project.
19. Accept what you can and cannot control
Finally, accept what’s going on. COVID-19 is beyond our control and accepting our situations and making peace with our circumstances is necessary.