There’s no way around it, the novel coronavirus that’s impacted us on a global level has had some of us feeling depressed. It’s a scary time filled with uncertainty. Whether you’ve been stuck inside, minimizing social contact, or you’re an essential worker, leaving only to face the virus. It’s natural to feel more down than usual.
That’s why today, we’re going to go over the Top 10 Tips For Fighting Covid Related Depression!
Make sure to read until number 1! It’s the tip that’s helped us at Psychology Element the most in tackling Covid Related Depression! We hope you love it as much as we do!
Number 10: Keep a daily schedule!
The pandemic has thrown us all off of our regular routines.
Maybe the gym you used to go to every morning before you began your day is closed and you’re having a hard time getting out of bed before work. Or maybe you’re completely locked down, and your days are blending together into one.
Having a daily schedule can have benefits to your mental health by increasing a positive attitude, motivation, and reducing stress.
Try creating a daily schedule and sticking to it! Add things like:
- 7:00 AM – Workout at home.
- 9:00 AM – Have your favorite breakfast and coffee.
- 11:00 AM – Check email, work on your favorite project
We recommend leaving things such as Netflix, or scrolling through your phone, until the late afternoon or evening, to mimic a regular schedule.
Trust us, you’ll be amazed by how much more positive you’ll feel!
I know I do!
Number 9: Have a healthy sleep pattern!
It’s much harder to keep a regular daily schedule if you’re staying up all night or sleeping in until noon. We get it, it’s hard getting out of bed when there’s nowhere to go!
Sleep is not only a key factor in maintaining a healthy immune system, which is more important now than ever before. It’s also essential in maintaining mental wellness.
Studies show that a healthy, consistent sleep schedule has positive impacts on learning, memory, and emotional well being.
So, how do we get our sleep schedule back on track?
- Have a set wake up time! Set an alarm and actually wake up to it. It might feel tough at first, but before you know it, you’ll be feeling so refreshed you’ll want to get out of bed!
- Dim the lighting in your house a couple of hours before bed, so you won’t slow the production of an important hormone in the facilitation of sleep called melatonin.
- Blue light from electronics, like your cell phone or laptop, can also decrease melatonin. Unplugging your devices 30-60 minutes before bed is a great way to fall asleep easier. (Or you can check out the blue light blocking glasses in the description)
- Relax! If you practice some breathing techniques or meditate 30 minutes before bed, you won’t be able to keep your eyes open!
Number 8: Stay informed with current events, but find happy news!
Nowadays, it seems like everywhere we turn we see negativity. Whether it’s on your social media feed, maybe your coworkers are discussing it at the table nearby, or you’re actively watching the news, everything seems negative and catastrophic.
Yes, it’s important to keep up with current events, especially if your region is experiencing consistent changes in public health guidelines and restrictions. But it’s just as important to find a balance to ensure you’re not overconsuming. It might not seem like a big deal, but overexposure to the news can actually trigger your body to release stress hormones, like cortisol or adrenaline.
If you find yourself glued to the news, try taking a break, and read some positive current events. There are tons of sources available online that exclusively post optimistic, happy news that’s sure to brighten your day! Next time you’re having your morning coffee, instead of watching the recent pandemic highlights, try finding something cheerful to start your day off with. Your mind will thank you for it!
Number 7: Stay Active!
Sure, your regular gym might be closed and the weather is getting colder, but it’s still important to exercise! Get bundled up and go for a 30-minute walk. If it’s chilly, bring a thermos of hot cocoa to stay warm and motivated. Or even doing jumping jacks or yoga in your living room is a great way to get your heart rate up.
Staying active releases endorphins – natural chemicals produced by the body that make you feel good! Plus, it’s great for maintaining a healthy sleep schedule.
Number 6: Eat a healthy diet!
Yes, it’s easy to turn to the potato chips and frozen pizza when your whole life feels spent indoors. Especially when going to the grocery store might feel scary, like the virus is everywhere! But it’s important to maintain a healthy, nutrient-rich diet.
If you’re social-isolating and stuck with a pantry of instant noodles and sugary cereals, try searching your community to see if they have any grocery delivery services available!
Regardless, filling your body with vitamins and nutrients, like antioxidants, is great for lowering anxiety and depression. Be sure to eat vitamin D rich foods, like salmon and eggs, which helps improve overall mood!
Number 5: Get into old hobbies or rediscover new ones!
Everyone has tons of free time on their hands, thanks to the pandemic, but no one knows what to do with it! Have you always enjoyed cooking? Try experimenting with recipes you never had the time to try before! Better yet, make a cooking blog! Take online classes that interest you or simply make an effort to read twenty pages of a novel a day.
Whatever you choose, hobbies are self-rewarding activities that will give you a sense of pride and accomplishment, even if you feel stuck at home!
Number 4: Take time to self-care keep up with personal grooming!
When you’re stuck inside each day, it’s easy to fall out of your morning beauty or grooming technique. But just because you’re not socializing, that doesn’t mean your self-esteem still isn’t impacted by the way you feel about yourself.
If you find yourself spending more time in your pajamas than before or your beard is getting untamed, spend some time making yourself look great and it’ll help you feel great! Even if you have nowhere to go, wear that nice dress you never get to wear while you enjoy your dinner.
Number 3: Get Creative!
Have you always wanted to write the next best selling novel but never had the time? Or maybe you used to love painting before you got your standard 9-5 desk job. Use this free time to spark up that untapped passion and creativity!
Creative expression is an amazing, cathartic outlet for anxiety and depression. If you’re feeling down, try writing a poem or busting out your old set of oil paints you haven’t thought of in months to express your emotions.
Even if you’re creating for fun, and not for an emotional outlet, anytime you’ve created something your brain is flooded with dopamine, the chemical associated with reward and pleasure. Woodworking, writing, coding, knitting, painting, building a side hustle – whenever you’ve completed a result that you created, you’re going to feel great.
Number 2: Keep your home space a healthy living space!
When you’re suddenly stuck inside your house all day, often with your family members or roommates, it’s natural for things to get messy. Have you noticed how waking up to a sink full of dishes seems to throw off your whole morning routine? Or, if you’re working from home, maybe you’ve set your boss’s important documents on last night’s spaghetti sauce left on the kitchen table?
Keeping your living area clean and organized is great for efficiency, allowing all the previously mentioned tips so much easier to follow! While you’re at it, maybe get a little creative and try decorating your space so it’s the perfect at-home oasis.
If you struggle with staying on top of housework, try doing at least twenty minutes of cleaning every day while listening to your favorite track. You’d be amazed by what you can get done in such a short amount of time!
Number 1: Finally, our favorite tip: Socialize and stay connected!
Staying at home doesn’t need to mean being isolated. Technology allows us to communicate instantly with our friends and family all around the world!
Video and audio calls are both far more effective at increasing connections than text messaging. However, video calling is by far the best at boosting our emotional connections. Facetime, Zoom, Skype, and other apps allow us to talk face to face with our friends and family. Some studies even show that the emotional connection one feels during video calls, compared to in-person, is only slightly smaller.
If you’re used to having lunch with your coworkers every Friday, round them all up and enjoy your own virtual lounge with a special dish that you’ve just learned. If you’re used to having movie nights with the gang, why not set up skype and stream a movie together? It’s amazing how much this helps! Fill your schedule with events with your loved ones and soon you’ll be feeling great!
We hope these tips help you relieve covid related depression! We’d love to hear your favorite tip, share it in the comments below!