As the semester and class delivery modes are changing rapidly, we must take care of ourselves more than ever and seek to find a makeshift norm during these unfamiliar times.
COVID-19 has impacted everyone globally and is being felt in all facets of life. The overwhelming impact of such a pandemic not only influences the physical health of those infected but also the mental health of those impacted at large. Therefore, we must take small measures of self-care.
As we make the transition to online, I have found it imperative to take small measures to adapt to the new "normal". Here’s what I’ve been doing to maintain a healthy state of mind, and hopefully it can help you stay motivated and keep your spirits up in a stressful time:
1. Adapting to the new "normal"
I’ve tried to stick to my regular routine as much as possible while adapting to the required changes in working/studying from home. Put yourself in the right frame of mind like getting dressed as you would for class, rather than lounging in your PJs. Take a regular lunch break.
2. Continue to do what you enjoy
Continuing to do things I enjoy is crucial for me to stay motivated and happy during these stressful times. I still go for my morning walks with my dog, get my favourite takeaway coffee and catch up with friends, albeit online.
What do you enjoy doing? Love exercise and sports? Try a home workout. Love eating out? Why not order in? Love hanging out with friends? Why not try a Netflix party?
3. Avoid media overload
I’ve learnt to take a break from all the media reports about COVID-19. There is no reason to watch the news 24/7, which will only lead to anxiety, stress, and feeling overwhelmed. I suggest checking the news once a day and going straight to official and reliable sources such as the Victorian Department of Health and Human Services or World Health Organisation websites for up-to-date information.
4. Surround yourself with a support network
Staying at home doesn’t mean you can’t stay connected with close friends and family. It's vital to have a reliable support network – so make the most of technology and social media platforms to check in with friends and family.
While these measures I’ve taken are small, I’ve found them to be impactful and have made my life more positive during this uncertain time. If we can all take small steps to better ourselves and maintain our mental health, we are in a much better position to take care of others.