Never have we lived in times quite like this. A time of uncertainty, constant change, financial hardship for many, unemployment, families not being able to meet and teenagers not being allowed to go out in groups with their peers. At the same time we have incredible technology such as Zoom and Facetime so that we can have meetings with family and people anywhere in the world. Record numbers of people turning to the bible and many people unable to go out are receiving church services by video or e mail.
I know a counsellor and also a hypnotherapist who have never been so busy helping clients over the phone. One has even had to turn away people with mental health issues, such is the need at this time.
Like many people, the Covid 19 situation we are now going through all over the world has brought up a lot of my emotions including some feelings of depression and apprehension about the future. I have come to realise that there is no shame in asking for help rather than trying to deal with everything myself. In some ways I have been more in touch with my family members than ever before as well as with some of my friends but although it is good to connect, they have at times been so concerned about the Covid situation themselves that I have had to look for additional help outside my circle of family and friends.
Sometimes talking to a trained counsellor can be beneficial especially at a time like this. The organisation MIND for example is there for anyone with a mental health issue whatever you may be feeling.
If you have a physical illness you will probably go to your Doctor if it doesn’t get better on its own but Doctors are also used to dealing with mental health issues. There are also organisations for just about every situation you may find yourself in. Contact details can be found in Doctor’s surgerys or on the Internet. Usually the people in the organisation have been through the same issues as you have so they will understand and be non judgemental. Some many simply listen and let you express feelings you could not tell someone you know, some will offer advice. I recently phoned an organisation in France called SOS as I was concerned about my income dropping due to less people coming for my music lessons and treatments during this period. The lady offered some helpful suggestions which I will follow up.
Apart from speaking to a trained person here are some other suggestions you may find helpful. Remember that the Body, Mind, Spirit and Emotions are all strongly connected so for example if you exercise you are highly likely to feel better emotionally, physically, mentally as well as spiritually.
SUGGESTIONS FOR IMPROVING YOUR MENTAL AND PHYSICAL HEALTH
Every day think of or list 3 things you are grateful for (and yes there is always something even if it is your cup of tea or morning coffee).
If a project seems too big, start with the first step even if you don’t feel like it. (e.g.pick up the phone or write your first sentence if you want to be an author). You will be amazed at how much better you will feel.
Schedule in some exercise every day if possible or at least several times a week. Exercise is good for the muscles, the heart, lungs and blood circulation and improves your mood.
Say “Thank you” to someone who has helped you whether it’s in the supermarket, a friend who has listened to you or to your child/grandchild who drew you a picture.
If you have financial difficulties, face up to them and talk to your bank as soon as possible.
Listen to your favourite music, often.
If you like singing, sing.
Go out in nature.
Stroke a pet.
Remember to smile.
Try a new skill such as playing a musical instrument or learning a new language even if it’s a few words.
Feel the joy in small everyday things.
If you are always helping others take time out for yourself. Have a hot bath, a walk or book a hair cut or a massage or reflexology treatment if you can.
Tel: (0044) 2082152243
SOS English speaking crisis helpline for English people living in France.
(0044) 1 46 21 46 46
01 45 39 40 00 (From France)
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I would love to hear from anyone reading this article for any more suggestions on how they have or are getting out of depression or anxiety into a more healthy mental state. Simply write something on the “Leave the comment section at the bottom of this page. With gratitude.