Our mental stability is waning. We are filled with anxiety over what may happen next. Will our loved ones get sick? Will we get COVID again? Will hospitals overflow? Will vaccines be mandated? Will we get to go back to work? Will COVID control our lives forever? There are so many questions that fill our minds that rob us of living lives of freedom.
We have been so overcome with the sickness that we have missed what this has done to our mental health. A price that we will pay long after the pandemic has ended. This has shaped our minds for the rest of our lives.
I have felt it as someone who already suffers from anxiety, but I have now watched people around me who have never experienced anxiety or panic suddenly fall victim to it. So how do we come out on the other side of this? How do we heal not only our bodies from COVID but our minds?
What must we do to heal from COVID’s Impact on mental health?
1. Be willing to admit what Covid has done to our mental health.
The conversations that surround mental health have always held tension, but the pandemic has added extra tension. We have to be willing to admit the problems we are having. Just like with day-to-day anxiety, admitting is the first step to healing. If the last two years have brought anxiety to the surface, acknowledging what is taking place matters a great deal in the process.
2. Know what triggers your anxiety.
Throughout the pandemic, I would become obsessed with looking at statistics and new stories until one day I could no longer take it. I could no longer watch the news, scroll online, or even engage in conversations about the pandemic without having a surge of anxiety and even panic attacks. Stepping away from the constant intake of information was vital in finding healing from my constant anxiety.
3. Do what you can.
This is a simple thought, but do what you can and leave the rest in God’s hands. If I know I am doing everything in my power to take care of myself and take care of my family, I have to leave the consequences to God. He is in control of all things.
4. Do not allow COVID to control your thought life.
We are almost two years into this pandemic and the struggle is more complex than ever. However, we get to choose whether or not we will allow this pandemic to control our thought lives. Is it in every thought we think? Will it define our attitudes towards other people? Will it fuel already volatile emotions? Remember the decisions and choices you can make that COVID doesn’t have a say in. Thank God for what he has given you to steward and act on today.
5. Seek counseling.
Counseling can make a world of difference in our lives when we struggle with mental health issues. There are times when we cannot make sense of our thoughts and feelings and require an outside professional to help us make sense of it all. Our emotions do not have to control us. Don’t be afraid to seek counseling.
Covid has trampled us mentally, the constant intake of information, the panic, the worries, the darkness around us, but we do not have to remain there. The pandemic may have robbed us of a lot of things but it does not have to rob us of our mental health as well.