To say that the past couple of months have been stressful would be an understatement. With what is currently going on in the world, stress, depression, anxiety, and other mental health issues have been affecting seemingly everyone to an extent. Fear of the unknown and what tomorrow may hold, loss of jobs and income, closing of schools, and being forced to stay indoors are all factors in what is likely affecting most people. Unfortunately, we are no experts on the trajectory of this pandemic, so we can’t say when or if things will be getting back to normal, but when it comes to your mental health, don’t wait for when or if, do it now!
Your mental health is just as important as your physical health, and with so many factors that may be affecting it out of your control, it is incredibly important to take control of your situation and make the best of it. There are several things you can be doing every day to help you stay strong mentally and keep from experiencing common issues such as anxiety and depression. Now, these tips should not be used instead of prescribed medication, and it is important to mention that if you are finding that nothing is helping you with your issues, to seek medical advice about how you can help yourself.
I know what you are thinking, not everyone can sit in a quiet room for an extended time with the kids home from school and having to help them with their online studies, but it is important for you to be able to be alone with your thoughts. According to Everyday Health, “research suggests even brief meditation sessions can make a difference in managing stress” Try to take some time for yourself, relax, focus on your breathing, and clear your mind, you will be amazed at how good feel after the fact.
While most people think of the physical benefits that exercising can have on your body, not many think of the mental benefits too! When you exercise, your body naturally releases hormones that make you feel good. In addition to the natural feeling, exercising will make you feel better about yourself, whether accomplishing a goal, looking better in the mirror, or just feeling better overall, having daily physical activity is crucial to your overall mental health. Exercise can directly impact depression and anxiety, as stated in this article from the Help Guide, a good place to visit for tips and help with mental wellness.
Sleep is something that most people don’t get enough of. How many hours do you sleep every night? Did you know that during sleep is when your body recovers and heals itself? Maybe if you thought of it that way, you would make sure you got a full night! In fact, this recent Harvard study talks about how sleep deprivation and sleep disruption can negatively impact your mental health.
Many of us are stuck at home and forced to stay indoors, but if you are able to go outside, take advantage! Vitamin D is great for your overall health! Take a walk around your neighborhood or relax in the backyard. Catch some rays and let nature help brighten you up. Research even shows the positive impact of outdoor activity on your overall mental health. Read more about it here!
If you are staying home through all of this, and find yourself bored, find something to do to keep yourself busy! Whether reading books, working on home projects, doing some spring cleaning, or taking this time to work on you, it is important to stay busy, and keep your focus on something.
Mental Health and Wellness is important for everyone, especially if you are a seafarer who may not have access to the help and assistance programs that those who aren’t at sea do. If you are a seafarer and need some help, check out SeafarerHelp, a free, confidential, multilingual helpline for seafarers and their families, available 24 hours per dya, 365 days per year!
With the spread of COVID-19 causing global concern, rest assured that all of us at MHG are here and ready to answer your insurance questions and concerns relating to the virus. For specific information on how COVID-19 affects your insurance coverage, please call us or visit your insurance carrier’s website.