COVID19 and Mental Health
We keep hearing it again and again, we are living through history. Business owners and leaders are working around the clock to save as many jobs as possible and to keep their companies afloat. HR professionals are having difficult conversations and helping their teams navigate their best options in the face of obstacles none of us have ever experienced before. People are being laid off, put on furlough, or taking pay and hour cuts. We are bombarded with news about how it’s going to get worse before it gets better. We are missing human connections and contact with the ‘outside world.’ We are encouraged to protect our health, wash our hands, practice social distancing, wipe down frequently used surfaces, not go out if you are sick, and many other things.
What most people are not talking about is ways to protect your mental health. We have complied some things to help you on your way to making your mental health a priority in our current situations.
- Take a break! Yes, it is ok to turn off the news, social media, and even your cellphone for a bit. Of course, you can let people know you are stepping away so no one sends out a search party, but no one is going to blame you for walking away for a little while. . Give yourself ‘brain breaks’ where you do not let any information in and just take time to process what you already have.
- Take care of your body. Yes, now is the perfect time for you to binge watch a Netflix series and we totally support that. We suggest Tiger King personally. However, physical exercise is important for mental health. Although gyms are closed you can still go outside for a walk, run, or bike ride. Our bodies need and crave sunshine and exercise. How lucky are we to be able to enjoy the beautiful Spring weather while it lasts?
- Make sure anything you read on COVID19 is factual. Rumors and untrue stories about the pandemic can cause panic. Before you start to panic about anything you read, make sure you fact check it. There will be times when things are misleading and you do not want to go off the deep end if someone is stretching the truth.
- Connect with others. We know you cannot see your best friends right now, but that doesn’t mean you cannot call or facetime them. Trust us, having good friends to cry and laugh with will make this thing easier. Zoom with your team at work so you can connect with each other. Make it fun! You can go on Twitter right now and see the backdrops people have created for the Zoom calls and laugh at how creative people are being. We are all alone in this together. As weird as that sounds just know you are not truly alone because we are all a little isolated right now.
- Find a new hobby. Maybe its breadmaking, sewing, scrapbooking, yoga, meditation, or underwater basket weaving. Whatever it is just make sure it sparks you joy. Order the things you need online, look up some videos on YouTube and you’re off! Make sure you post your newest creations online and show everyone your new skills. What good is sewing an entire dress that you would never wear in public if you can’t show it to people?
Whatever you choose to do, just make sure you are remembering that you are not alone in this. People all over the world are struggling in the ways you are and though it might feel like you are the only one with the weight of the world on your shoulders, we promise you are not. There is always a rainbow at the end of a storm so we just need to hold on until we see one. When this is all over, we will be less likely to take the little things for granted. Going to a movie, seeing friends, and going to work will be something that brings joy again. If you need anything during this time please make sure you reach out. We are all one team in this and together we can make it through.
We would like to offer you a virtual coffee visit. No need to talk about HR or Covid19, just 20 minutes to decompress over Zoom. E-mail us at VirtualCoffee@ALTHRPartners.com and we’ll spend some time talking about the Tiger King, or whatever else you would like.