Looking after your mental health has always been important but, now more than ever, that statement has never been more true. The year 2020 will never be forgotten for obvious reasons, many of which will have taken its toll on your mental health through one way or another.
Whether it is because of constant rolling news around the spread of COVID-19, the prospect of losing your livelihood because of it or simply because you have been unable to see loved ones during this bleak period, you should take solace in knowing that you are not alone. There are thousands, millions even, of people around the world who are feeling just like you. The world as we know it has been turned upside down and we have been forced to contend with finding new ways of working, socialising, and exercising.
As we are spending more time at home now, it is only right that we consider ways in which we can look after our mental health at home. Here, we look at some of the things you can do at home that will help with your mental health that you might want to consider.
Turning All Devices Off
We live in an age where we are connected almost 100% of the time. There is no getting away from breaking news stories and social media, both of which are becoming the cause of a negative impact on our mental health. Every day, there is something new being reported about the virus that can make anyone feel anxious. Day after day, we are reminded of the severity of the virus, the new number of positive cases by region and, even more heartbreakingly, deaths.
Seeing these numbers increase daily evokes fear and feelings of anxiety. It sometimes feels as though you cannot get away from it, especially when we are constantly logged in on one device or another. To combat this, the best thing you can do is to simply turn your smartphone and tablet off. Log out of your social media accounts and make this a habit. Set yourself a time every day when you will turn off all devices in your home – perhaps even set yourself full days where you complete unplug from everything – and dedicate the time to you and/or your family in your household. You will be amazed by how much better you will feel by taking a break from technology, even just for a short period.
Start a New Hobby
Keeping your mind occupied is fantastic for your mental health. A new hobby allows you to explore other avenues of interests and helps to make you feel productive. Additionally, this could also be a fantastic way of meeting new people, which will also have a positive effect. When the days are long because you feel as though you are stuck at home, finding something new and exciting to fill that time up is a sensible move – thousands have taken up new hobbies this year that, ordinarily, they would never have had time for beforehand.
This is all about turning a negative into a positive. You never know, your new hobby could turn into a side hustle or even a new career that you are passionate about. Whether you have aspirations of turning a hobby into your full-time moneymaker or are more than happy keeping it as just a hobby, there is no better time to dedicate time to whatever it is you want to do. By giving your mind something positive to focus on, this will do wonders for your mental health, as well as helping you to forget – even if just temporarily – about what is happening around us.
More Time in the Garden
Regardless of whether you are a keen gardener or not, spending time in the garden when the weather is nice makes for a fantastic safe haven at home. If you are lucky enough to have an outside space that you can turn into your own personal paradise, we highly recommend doing so (this could be that new hobby we were speaking about earlier). Of course, a garden can be whatever you want it to be.
If you want to sit back and relax with a cold beverage or two, your garden will look magnificent with a roll of freshly laid lawn or artificial grass, complemented with beautiful tables and chairs set. Equally, for those that like to be a little more active, you can turn your outside space into a mini-sports arena. Children will certainly love somewhere they can play ball games such as football, basketball and more, while adults might prefer to work on their golf swing with their own putting green (click here to learn more about installing your very own green in your garden).
Sitting inside 24 hours a day, seven days a week does nothing for neither your mental nor physical health. You need to be able to get outside and breathe in the fresh air and take in the sunlight because without it you will be much poorer off. If you are one of the many who are working from home for the first time, a summer’s day in the garden may just be the change of scenery you need to jumpstart productivity if this is something you are struggling with.
Keeping in Touch
Making sure to keep in touch with your nearest and dearest is essential for your mental health because you must remember that these times will pass. There will be a time when we look back on this chapter of our lives, wondering how on earth we managed to get through it – but get through it we will.
Even if you cannot be as close to friends and families as you are undoubtedly craving right now, you can still keep in touch through phone calls, text messaging and, most popular during the pandemic, video calling. It isn’t the same, but it’s better than not having that contact. As well as your mental health, you will also be helping those who you keep in contact with because they are going through the same thing as you right now.