Mental Health

Coping with Anxiety and Mental Health during the Lockdown

The lockdown and social distancing, though proved to be the best way to deal with the pandemic, was certainly challenging for our personal well-being. Where some people devoted it to families, some engaged in creative activities and others worked from home, but all of us learned about self.

The burdensome nature of self-learning is usually eliminated by external forces. The absence of these forces in the lockdown helped us go deeper within ourselves. This deeper knowledge about self can lead to an expression of extreme negative and positive emotions. Dealing with these emotions can be highly strenuous. Therefore, for people with emotional issues may not have taken the lockdown well.

My personal example could be relevant in this regard as I experienced the first anxiety attack of my life. A very minor fight turned into me losing my breath, shivering, crying and feeling scared. This unusual attack was a build up of multiple negative thoughts and occurences throughout the lockdown, but mostly being away from family. Pondering over the incidence was hard, but made me realize the dependency on a certain kind of expectation from reality. This was not a good sight.

Instead of going deeper into the thought of having anxiety, I decided to personally find ways to deal with it. The following methods could be highly effective in such situations:

1. Talk to either a family member or a close friend: Talking to family with always make you feel positive and satisfied. They will certainly make you happy and take you back to good memories. Instead of discussing anxiety, discuss memories and times together.

2. Learn to be optimistic: One feeling, that you must always work on achieving is ‘optimism’. Being optimistic about the future will always help you build ways to be busy. To be optimistic, try to work on the idea that you always wanted to work on, discuss it with people, research, gather knowledge and reach from atleast 0 to 1.

“It’s not that optimism solves all of life’s problems; it is just that it can sometimes make the difference between coping and collapsing.”

– Lucy MacDonald, Learn to Be an Optimist

3. Be Creative: Say complete no to mundane activities and do stuff that requires a different approach or creativity. This way you will learn something everyday, while not ending up feeling the same. Mundane activities may involve watching movies, listening to music and scrolling through social media, etc. Meanwhile, creative activities involve learning new painting techniques, cooking cuisines, writing, etc.

4. Breathing Exercises: I only felt the significance of concentrating on my breathing in the moment when I lost of breath during the attack. Breathing exercises really help to calm you down and make you feel relaxed.

5. Maintining hygience and personal well-being: In such times we can be highly lazy in maintaining ourselves. Little things such as taking a shower everyday, dressing up, eating the right food, looking good, etc can help you feel good about yourself. Everytime when I see a minor sign of depression I spend time pampering myself with skincare, taking a shower and getting ready. This helps boost my energy levels and successfully removes all negative thoughts from my mind.

I can confidently say that these methods have proved successful in my personal life and helped me cope with the unessential stress that I imposed on myself. No one ever calls it upon themselves, but is beyond one’s control after a point. I’d suggest not emphasizing on the presence on anxiety but shifting complete focus on keeping engaged, feeling healthy and creative.

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