Looking After Your Mental Health In A Time Of Pandemic

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Our world is currently facing a global health emergency. As the virus spreads, country leaders and health officials race to contain the situation by implementing various protocols. From limiting travel, closing down establishments including offices and schools, and enforcing social distancing, our lives were abruptly turned upside down.

We suddenly find ourselves in isolation and disengaged from society. This is enough to put anyone’s mental health into turmoil. Together with following these quarantine protocols, it is also essential that we do not forget to take care of our mental health.

The Pandemic And Our Mental Health

The pandemic disrupted many aspects of our society. The protocols put in place to protect us from COVID-19 can affect our mental health negatively. Our daily lives were disrupted. Additionally, the pandemic also gave rise to other issues, such as fearing for our family’s safety and economic concerns.

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Assimilating into this new routine alongside processing the whole situation can be mentally exhausting. The uncertainty and confusion can result in anxiety.

We can also become prone to loneliness as we follow self-isolation protocols. All of these can cause increased stress and anxiety, which can manifest through sleeping problems, irritability, unhealthy eating habits, as well as substance abuse.

Managing all of these at the same time can be distressing. Although the impact of this pandemic can vary from person to person, everyone must keep our mental health in check. By keeping an eye out for our and our loved ones’ mental health, we can help ensure that we adjust to our new lives in pandemic successfully.

Caring For Your Mental Health Amidst The Pandemic

Although many of us may have already experienced stress and anxiety before the pandemic, its effect on our mental health can be stronger during this time. We can be especially vulnerable as our usual coping mechanisms – such as doing our sports and hobbies and hanging out with friends and family – may be currently inaccessible.

Given this, we enumerated ways on how you can care for yourself during these trying times.

  • Establish A New Routine

The sudden disruption of our regular routines can significantly contribute to our stress and anxiety. The lack of structure can result in a disorganized life and state of mind. Establishing a new routine can help bring normalcy and structure back to your life. It can also help set a schedule for your activities, ensuring a proper balance between rest and work.

  • Stay Active And Exercise

Exercising can help relieve stress. It is a natural way to release endorphins, which can improve our overall mood. Despite stay-at-home protocols, try to move around as much as you can. Explore home workouts, or take a walk or jog outside if allowed.

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  • Limit Exposure To News

Keeping updated with the latest news is crucial. However, constant exposure to it can aggravate negative thoughts, such as fear and anxiety. Your mind needs to take a break, as well. Decrease your news exposure, including those that you see on social media. You can give yourself a schedule of when you’ll check for updates.

Likewise, remember to get your news from reputable and trustworthy sources.

  • Allot Time For Leisure And Relaxation

Being confined into our homes can give us an illusion that we are always “resting.” However, idle time can be different from leisure time or relaxation time. Explore new ways to have fun and relax, such as discovering new hobbies and exploring new movies or games. You can also try to find new ways to relax, such as through meditation.

  • Connect With Loved Ones

Quarantine life does not mean total isolation. Even though mass gatherings are prohibited and going out is discouraged, we can still connect with our friends and family through technology. Getting updates from them and seeing they are in good condition can help put both your and their minds at peace.

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Resilience And Moving Forward

It is understandable not to feel like our usual selves during this pandemic. The situation we are all in and how we are forced to deal with it can be overwhelming.

Dr. Konstantinos Petsanis, MD, Ph.D., validates this. According to him, “Just the fact of someone wondering if he is positive for COVID is like having a stigma and something that is threatening his life… and that affects, of course, his behavior.”

This highlights the need for us to look after and take care of ourselves actively. Keeping your mental health in a sound state will help you be more able to deal with the changes around us. Staying healthy, whether mentally or physically, will help us adjust easier, effectively do our tasks, and support our loved ones.

Reducing Stress And Anxiety At Home

 

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The organizers of the Stress Management Conference 2019 delivered an excellent program for an exchange of insights and views by renowned scientists, which covered much of the scope of research in anxiety, depression, and stress management. The attendees, who were clearly satisfied with what they learned and experienced, especially the world-class facilities that the venue was equipped with, witnessed talks from psychiatrists, psychologists, and other healthcare professionals. The conference featured plenty of interesting academic programs, such as workshops, panel discussions, presentations, and scientific sessions. Among the most discussed topics in the event was how to reduce stress and anxiety in the home, and we will be sharing with you some of the simple tips shared by some of the psychiatrists.

Be open to each other. You know your spouse and your children more than anyone. When they act differently, you’d know something’s up, so rather than avoiding what’s obvious, ask them how they’re feeling or if something’s bothering them. Teens are moody and unpredictable but making them feel that you there for them may encourage them to confide in you.

Leave work stress at the workplace. You might have gotten used to keeping a jolly face at work, but perhaps you’ve also been letting your family have it when you get home. Don’t bring your work stress to your family and do them more harm than good. Take a deep breath before entering your front door and remember that your family is the most important thing in your life. You must protect it physically, emotionally, and mentally.

Share the chores. Who loves doing household chores, right? But they do have to be done to keep a clean and safe home. So instead of hearing the complaints and hesitations, why don’t you share the chores with all family members? Divide the chores like washing the dishes, tidying up the kitchen after meals, vacuuming, and throwing the trash. This can definitely avoid future conflicts. If everyone puts in some effort, no one will feel like they’ve been ‘abused’ by having most of the chores. Besides, it’s a great teaching moment for the whole family.

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Eat as a family. Dinnertime is usually when everyone’s around, and that makes it one of the most important family moments. It’s when dad is relaxing and watching television while waiting for the food to get cooked, and you’re in the kitchen prepping things up, and the children just finished with their homework or ballet classes. Everyone is relaxed and eager to eat.

Dinners are also a great time to check on what’s up with each of your family members. You can ask them how their day went and then maybe it can start a conversation that relieves one of your kids because finally, he was able to talk things out with you. It’s a vital time to get to know your family and what they’re going through. You can even end it with an exciting board game after, especially if it’s a weekend.

 

 

Separated In Lockdown: How To Maintain Long-Distance Relationships Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

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The social distancing brought by the COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the dynamic of romantic relationships. Especially if you’re quarantining away from your partner, physical contact is a total impossibility. The situation is particularly tough because touch is a way of feeling connected and showing your love to each other. Removing this from the equation, especially in a stressful time like this makes it harder to sustain a relationship.

The global pandemic makes time an uncertain factor as you are away from each other without a certainty of being reunited again any sooner. This lack of reassurance can spark frustration and feeling of loneliness. However, although a long-distance relationship can be challenging, dating apart together with success is more than possible. There are a lot more ways to still feel together, despite having to be physically distant from each other.

If you’re dating long-distance during COVID-19, here are some tips that will help you and your partner share and create intimate moments together afar:

Make The Most Out Of Messaging Apps

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Communication is simply the most vital aspect of any relationship. The time you get to talk to each other during isolation is valuable. For that reason, make sure that you stay in touch regularly. Make the most out of social media and messaging apps where you can engage in chatting, phone calls, and video calls so that you can still be with each other in some way.

Now is the time to manage distant communication intensity. Work around your schedules and make time for each other by talking frequently.

It can also be an opportunity to level up your sexual intimacy by having fun in experimenting with how you can satisfy each other’s sexual urges on-camera or through drafting passionate and intimate messages for each other. It will also allow you to learn how to make things hotter the next time you get together.

Prepare Virtual Dates

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It is easier said than done, but try to find a way to carry on with the usual activities that you can do at this time. The pandemic is all over the news. Try to take a step back and breathe and make sure that this does not consume your life and energy.

With your partner, you can do a lot of things together while you are apart. It can be a time to learn more about each other by playing games together that involves asking questions and telling stories about your life.

You can also watch TV series or movies together while you’re video calling, or you can have virtual dinner dates together. Also, more and more celebrities and musicians are doing live online concerts or uploading their past shows on the Internet, so you can even “go” to a romantic concert date together.

Try to be creative by setting the scene of the background of your video call. You can put a candlelit on the table as if you’re together, or you can dress up like you’re going to a fancy restaurant—the possibilities are endless.

Make Plans For The Future

The pandemic will not last forever, and you and your partner will eventually see each other again, so what are you going to do when that day comes?

Planning an activity together can be a great bonding time and distraction from the anxiety the pandemic is causing. It also gives you something to be excited about and look forward to when this end.

Plan a memorable trip or activity that you will both enjoy. As early as now, you may want to make a list of things that you’ll do and research hotels and restaurants in the place that you want to go to and the activities that you can do there.

Making plans for the future can allow you and your partner to see the positive things when apart.

Give Each Other Reassurance

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As much as you can, talk about your fears and worries to your partner openly and honestly. Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D., says, “Couples who share their feelings, both good and bad, are closer than partners who just try to tough it out.” What’s best for you in this challenging time is to acknowledge your true feelings. Communicate and take turns listening to each other about serious conversations about your job, your relationships, or your family.

Giving each other assurances can further deepen your relationship as a couple and improve your mindset as an individual. Assuring your partner that everything will eventually turn out okay and giving advice to each other can help ease both of your worries.

Conclusion

Remember, this is just a temporary set-up. To make this setting work, you both need to exert more effort in understanding each other and making things work to stay connected. This COVID-19 pandemic can teach us that separation is not always bad. Instead, it allows us to strengthen our bonds and relationships even when away from our loved ones.

Marriage And Family Therapists And What They Do

 

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The 2017 Couples Therapy Symposium was an event that was aimed at developing leadership skills and improving therapists’ way of dealing with partners, individuals, and families who needed help with the challenges they were facing in life. Those who just graduated from their family therapy course, and even the seasoned ones were encouraged to join the event, as different speakers spoke about various topics that were definitely beneficial to all family therapists.

In relation to this, we would like to share a few details on marriage and family therapy – who the professionals are in this field and what they do.

Who Are They?

MFTs or marriage and family therapists are members of the mental health team trained in the field of psychotherapy. They are qualified to diagnosed and administer treatments for emotional and mental illnesses that are experienced by couples and family members. These are a group of therapists who have studied and gained at least 13 years of clinical experience in marriage and family therapy. They are committed to helping partners and families address their family issues.

What Do They Do?

LMFTs:

  • diagnose and treat mental illnesses
  • formulate treatment plans
  • practice psychotherapy with couples, individuals, and family members
  • guide and help their clients in improving interpersonal skills
  • do interviews, discussions, and assessments to collect information about their clients.

Other than providing these services to their clients, they also advertise their services, especially if they do private practice. These kinds of therapists spend quite a sufficient amount of time writing progress notes, evaluations, and recommendations.

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How are they different from the other types of therapists? Aside from the fact that their scope is mostly psychotherapy and dealing with mental health issues, they are also the therapists who spend more than half of their time working on family dynamics and how they impact a family’s psychological health. Every day, they tackle various issues of people from all walks of life. They are focused more on improving one’s self-esteem to prevent anxiety, depression, anger, and other negative emotions. They are committed to reaching out to families that are somehow broken and want to be whole again.

 

 

A Story Of A Wife’s Agonizing Pain Of Having To Live With A Sexually Addicted Husband

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Sex and intimacy are all part of marriage. It is the symbol of love and unity of two unique individuals. Some countries observe a conservative approach when it comes to this topic. Catholic nations denounce sexual intercourse outside marriage, more so with multiple partners. Meanwhile, there are countries which are open-minded about this delicate subject.

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Helping Your Spouse Deal With Depression

Marriage is composed of two unique individuals who came from a different family and had different life experiences. When you get married, it means you are embracing both the good and the bad about your partner. You don’t just call it off because of a mistake, a shortcoming, or a status. Marriage faces different kinds of challenges from within like when the other party is having a mental health condition such as depression.

“Depression is not a weakness of character, laziness, or a phase. Tough love, like telling someone to ‘buck up’ or ‘try harder,’ doesn’t work, and worsens the illness,” says Deborah Serani, PsyD.

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Hey Mom! Taking Care Of Yourself Is How You Take Care Of Your Family

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If you are a woman who has not gone to the salon for ages to have her hair or nails done, salute!

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What A Depressive Husband Sounds Like

Finding a partner in life is crucial in determining your wellbeing. It is vital in keeping you healthy, sane, and successful. If you want to have a peaceful and happy life, you better make sure the partner you get is someone that will bring you positivity in life instead of causing you stress or depression.

“Depression is not a weakness of character, laziness, or a phase. Tough love, like telling someone to ‘buck up’ or ‘try harder,’ doesn’t work, and worsens the illness,” according to Deborah Serani, PsyD.

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Advantages And Disadvantages Of Long Distance Relationships

They say, “Love conquers all,” but does it? How does love work with time apart from each other? Would long-distance relationships last longer than when you are physically together? How do couples make it work when they could not see or touch each other?

“A long-distance relationship or LDR is typically an intimate relationship that takes place when the partners are separated by a considerable distance. No one is geographically undesirable anymore but many are geographically challenged with the goal of maintaining love at a distance.”Suzanne Phillips, Psy.D., ABPP.

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Psychiatry: Marriage Causing Mental Illness (You Need To End It)

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“Acknowledging the relationship was no longer working can be difficult and walking away even harder,” says counselor Victoria Gigante, Ed.M.

An unhealthy relationship can cause too much emotional stress that possibly links to some severe mental illness. It will affect all the areas of your life and turn it upside down. It can damage your social interaction, self-worth, self-confidence, and productivity. That is why psychiatrists tend to explain why it is necessary to understand the need for courage when it’s time to end the marriage.

 

Unbalanced Relationship

Being stuck in a relationship that hinders you from developing a confident personality is a sign that you should end the marriage. When one or both of you don’t contribute to the growth of your partner anymore, your marriage tends to get stuck in problematic situations over and over again. Your argument about little things can cause both of your time and effort that will eventually end up wasted. Your marriage will become the definition of difficulties that seem to be unmanageable. You will ultimately feel less appreciated and unloved.

“Breaking up can be a really difficult decision. You can look at a relationship from outside and say you have some really unsolvable problems, you should break up’ but from the inside that is a really difficult thing to do and the longer you’ve been in a relationship, the harder it seems to be.”Samantha Joel, PhD.

At most times, you will have this struggle in keeping yourself together. You end up ignoring plans and start to go on a different path. It is complicated since married couples should know how to compromise. When you happen to have an honest conversation and realize that a stable future is unrealistic, then it’s time to let go. There is no reason for you to keep yourself strangled by the idea that marriage is always perfect. You need to consider your emotional happiness as well.

 

Deteriorating Health

Your marriage should have to be the reason for your complete wellbeing. Though it is normal to experience several misunderstandings, it shouldn’t put you in a position that you can no longer function. When you feel the extreme pressure of maintaining your emotional equilibrium and mental responsiveness, then you are not healthy anymore. If you struggle to identify your personality and feel like you’re losing control over yourself, then you need to breakthrough. The shame, guilt, anxiety, and pressure will not only make it impossible for you to keep going, but it’ll also drastically damage your wellbeing in no time.

 

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Negative Impact

When you’re marriage is not positively affecting your life, then it’s time for you to pull yourself out. The kind of relationship that hinders you from becoming productive will soon create a different version of yourself. You’ll become more insensitive, paranoid, afraid, depressed, and sometimes suicidal. Your family and friends may also suffer from the stress that your marriage can give you. In severe cases, you may tend to lose your own identity because of the pain and suffering.

 

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You may suffer a lot from those uncomfortable feelings that contribute to damaging effects, but you have to pull yourself and try harder to stay on track. It may take you a while to realize the need for ending a relationship, but factors that continuously damage your emotional and psychological health are enough reason to get out of the situation. Remember that you are supposed to feel loved and not to be dragged down.

Advocate on mental health, online depression community creator, and Special Advisor to the Johns Hopkins Mood Disorder Center, Therese Borchard says, “I realize the most difficult task for a person with a broken heart is to stand still and feel the crack. But that is exactly what she must do. Because no shortcut is without its share of obstructions. Here’s a simple fact: You have to grieve in order to move on.”