Over the past month on the blog we've been addressing different topics impacting you as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. Times are really tough. Multiple weeks into COVID-19 quarantine, many of us have exhausted our list of interesting, at-home activities and the newness of homeschooling or work from home has definitely worn off. These are the days when cabin fever gets bad, and you really need to look after your mental health.
That's why right now Malbek is supporting Crisis Text Line through a financial donation. Crisis Text Line provides 24/7 support for those in crisis, not just those who are suicidal. Their goal is to help struggling people out of a hot moment and into a cool one using the medium of text, which often makes people more willing to share their thoughts under the cover of anonymity. Plus, Crisis Text Line uses data-driven analysis to drive faster, more accurate responses. And we are big fans of using data to solve real world problems!
Crisis Text Line has a number of helpful suggestions for taking care of your mental health during these times of uncertainty. Here are a few of our own.
Feel Your Feelings
This may make you want to roll your yes, but there's a surprising amount of truth in "feel your feelings". Depression, anxiety, fear, sadness, loneliness, isolation, frustration, or some combination of all of them are normal emotions right now. Suppressing those feelings or ignoring them isn't very healthy in the long-run. When we distract or numb ourselves, we are just kicking the can down the road. Eventually these feelings will come out, taking a toll on us and those we care about. Instead, sit with the feelings. Yes, it may be very uncomfortable, but it is an important part of processing this experience.
Be Kind and Patient
Once you've identified those hard feelings, be kind and patient with yourself. Don't judge yourself because you're not getting a lot done or feel in a rut. It's OK if you feel down or scared. These are extraordinary times and you are not alone. We all need some extra grace these days. Think of some self-care ideas that will make you feel good and then go do them. It will not always be this bad and you will not always feel this way.
Talk to Someone
Talking about the situation can help you process it and feel less alone. Part of the challenge these days is feeling isolated. Isolation can magnify fears and doubt, giving them greater power and control than they deserve. Instead of withdrawing, call a friend. Video chat with a colleague. Text a family member. Talk about what's on your mind and how much this situation sucks. Afterwards, you will definitely feel lighter.
Ask for Help
Maybe you don't know how you're going to pay your bills this month. Maybe you are an essential worker, or someone in your family is, and the stress of possible exposure is weighing heavily on you. Maybe being cooped up is finally driving you crazy and sometimes you feel like you can't breath or your heart is racing. There's nothing wrong with admitting that you're struggling and asking for help. Crisis Text Line is jus one of many organizations available to help if you need it. You can text HOME to 741741 and you will immediately be connected with a live, trained crisis counselor who is there to help.
From all of us at Malbek, stay safe and be well!