Few of us would argue that mental health should be high on our list of priorities. In theory, we know mental health matters, but then reality takes over. Deadlines loom. We get overwhelmed with work. Our child gets sick. We’re exhausted. And then we waste time getting lost on Twitter or Facebook or Instagram.
With the novel coronavirus “COVID-19” upon us, mental health is on our collective minds more than ever. The pandemic has us feeling uncertain, helpless, sad, even angry. Physical distancing and the closure of schools and workplaces are particularly challenging for us as they affect what we love to do, where we want to be, and who we want to be with.
As people all around the world find themselves working from home or being home-schooled – unable to travel even down the street to visit friends or family – staying mentally healthy is more challenging and more important than ever before.
Yet even during this pandemic when mental health is on everyone’s minds, many of us struggle to place mental health check-ins on our never-ending list of things we need to take care of every day. Now more than ever, these check-ins belong at the top of our list.
Good mental health is essential to creating the life you want.
Everyone wants to be happy. We want to feel a positive sense of mental well-being. But the reason most of us find happiness elusive is that we don’t do the things we need to do in order to maximize our mental health.
Although we know we shouldn’t be spending our days sitting on the sofa eating pizza and watching TV, the pandemic is allowing us to be just a tad more gentle with ourselves in terms of our indulgences. We still need to try to eat healthily, drink enough water, exercise when we can, and get a decent amount of sleep, but most of all, we need to keep our mental health in check.
When in doubt, reach out.
While the symptoms of rundown mental health may not always be as recognizable as the telltale aches and sniffles of physical illness, they’re no less significant. Excessive alcohol or drug use, extreme mood changes, or suicidal thinking are conditions that need to be seriously addressed. But less obvious symptoms like withdrawal from friends and activities, feeling sad, down, or confused, or having a hard time concentrating, excessive fears or worries, trouble sleeping, or extreme feelings of guilt are all signs that our mental health needs more attention – and more action.
Even if your symptoms and feelings aren't severe or impairing your day to day responsibilities, your mental health still warrants attention and care. If you’ve been putting off setting up an appointment with a therapist or reaching out for help in other ways, why not make the call now?
Mental health doesn’t happen because you wish for it. It happens because you put in the thought and effort to achieve it. There are a wide range of activities we can weave into our daily life that have been scientifically proven to protect and elevate our mental health. Within the Serenity app, you can access science-based, practical techniques that help you challenge negative thinking patterns and turn unhealthy behaviors into productive coping skills that improve the quality of your life and your feeling of well-being.
31-Day COVID-19 Mental Wellness Challenge
In May, we observe Mental Health Month, an initiative started by Mental Health America more than 70 years ago. In line with this year’s Mental Health Month theme, “Tools 2 Thrive”, Serenity is offering daily activities designed to boost your efforts in making mental wellness a priority.
As the World Health Organization reminds us, “Without mental health there can be no true physical health.” How will you protect yours this month – and beyond?
Join the 31-Day COVID-19 Mental Wellness Challenge by following Serenity on Instagram @GetSerenity, or the Serenity Facebook page. We encourage you to document your experience and post pictures under #MySerenity.