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  • Karen McPhail, RN, MSN

Protecting Your Mental Health

As covid is still a challenge in many areas we wanted to share some pointers for moving forward in a positive way! Here are some simple steps one can take to help cope with stress daily and especially during challenging times:

1. Take a time out from television coverage, online, and social media! Excessive exposure to watching, reading, or listening to news stories and on social media can be stress producing! Stay informed, but limit over exposure to decrease stress and anxiety!

2. Take time to do something for yourself that you enjoy each day. Mindfulness, meditation, yoga, etc can be helpful in clearing the mind and fostering relaxation. Try something new- break the cycle!

3. Take care of your body. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, exercise regularly, get plenty of sleep, hydrate well, and avoid alcohol and drugs. Reach out if you need guidance in any of these areas as we are here to help!

4. Do not withdraw, stay connected to others through telephone, FaceTime, Snapchat, Instagram, messenger, linked in, etc. Find your platform and connect. Share your concerns and how you are feeling with a friend or family member. Explore some online counseling or safe chat areas that may also provide an outlet if limited support. Again we can help with this!

5. Explore a variety of outlets for you emotions. Do what works for you- try a daily journal or diary. Try posting each day a list of things you are thankful for. Set positive goals for each day and check them off when accomplished!

6. Take this time to try something new or something that you have been putting off due to time constraints. There are some terrific online classes and free seminars to enjoy at this time. Skill share is fun too and a great way to connect and learn new things! Volunteer your time in a safe way to help feel purpose and fulfillment on your terms!

Shepherd's Centers, many senior centers, and other groups have terrific and engaging virtual programs too! If online is not your thing, then connect with nature if able! Sit outside, in the park, on your deck or balcony - take time to appreciate all that is around you and that is positive!

7. If you are feeling the stress beginning to build up and feel it is not manageable on your own, reach out to seek support. Contact the National Disaster Distress Helpline for 24/7 emotional support and crisis counseling - Calls - 1-800-985-5990 and text TalkWithUs to 66746 are answered by trained counselors who will listen to your concerns, provide guidance, explore available supports, and offer referrals to community resources.

8. Remember you are not alone! Reach out also through our contacts area for guidance! We are here to help!

Additional Resource:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline

Hours: Available 24 hours. Languages: English, Spanish.


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