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March 22, 2021

Five Ways to Put Your Mental Health First During COVID-19

Being in the midst of a pandemic for a year has taken a toll on the mental health of women around the world. Finding an achievable work-life balance can be difficult, and finding ways to alleviate stress while coping with the pandemic can take some time to figure out. However, it is important for women to make their mental health a priority; having good habits to improve your overall well-being allows your mind to function at its best. With that being said, here’s a list of fun and easy ways to help you achieve better mental health and productivity today.

  1. Reach out to others. Living without our usual social contacts can make people feel isolated and detached. All the more reason to give your old college friend from across the country a call! Try videoconferencing, calling, and texting loved ones you can’t physically be with. Better yet, set up a Zoom movie date or some fun virtual games with family. Connecting with others is a great way to alleviate stress and remind yourself of important aspects of your life.
  2. Get out at least once a day. Although we’re in a period where many people are confined to their homes more than usual, going out to get some fresh air is still a great way to cater to your mental health and well-being. A walk during sunrise or sunset, a quick ball game, or outdoor yoga can help you feel connected to the world and surrounding nature. Grab a buddy or a pet, and head out!
  3. Get some exercise. What’s a great way to stay healthy and motivated? Getting into a productive workout routine! Whether it’s going for a run, taking an online workout class, or playing sports, getting your body moving is a great way to take your mind off work and the pandemic while boosting your mood and energy.
  4. Try new recipes, and feed your soul with the right foods. What’s a great thing to do when you’re stuck at home? Cooking! On Monday, bring South Asian cuisine to your kitchen, and on Friday, think spicy Caribbean. Try out new recipes you’ve set aside for too long—you never know what new dish you may love. This is a great way to find mouthwatering recipes that are both delicious and nutritious. Try eating vegan or kosher for a change; the possibilities are endless!
  5. Limit social media, and develop a self-care toolkit. In an age where a lot of events are covered on social media, constantly seeing information about the pandemic and other tragic events can lead to increased levels of anxiety and depression; limiting exposure can promote overall mental health and well-being. Instead of spending time on social media, you might want to develop a self-care toolkit. A lot of kits include sensory components, including those that provide comforting pressure. Some examples include a soft blanket, hot chocolate, or essential oils paired with journaling, mandala coloring books, or even bubble gum.

Although the pandemic has taken a toll on our lives, it’s important to have a positive mindset and have hope about a better and brighter future. With the implementation of effective vaccines, we can feel positive that our world will once again be safe for having the social connections we all love. In the meantime, make sure to take time for yourself, utilize resources such as therapy if needed, and remember that we’ll all get through this one day at a time.

Jeannine Nwade is the spring 2021 marketing writing intern at Barclay Damon. She is a rising business administration and political science major at the University at Buffalo, School of Management. In the future, she hopes to work in politics or in a law firm before attending law school, where she plans to study international arbitration and litigation. With a strong passion for social equity and public interest, Jeannine plans to use her legal career to provide representation for those who cannot afford it themselves and to ensure that marginalized communities receive the proper justice under the law. 


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