Mental Resilience during COVID 19 – A short article by Adrian Goh Guan Kiong

Mental Resilience during COVID 19 – A short article by Adrian Goh Guan Kiong

The outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic has become a source of stress and adversity for a lot of people.

We all need resilience to get through this. Resilience will help us all overcome the difficulties of these times. But not many of us have tough mental attitudes as resilience isn’t something we’re born with. Resilience is built over some time.

Our resilience level depends on how our experiences interact with the unique individual genetic makeup we are composed of. That’s why the way we react or respond to stress and adversity is different.

Consider resilience to be a balance scale or a seesaw. In this case, a negative experience pushes the seesaw towards negative results and positive experiences take it towards good results. So, in the post-COVID-19 world, one needs resilience to survive the changing times.

In this article, let me share with you how to develop mental resilience and thrive in these uncertain times. 

5 ways to build mental resilience

The following are simple, yet effective ways to develop a tough character to withstand the adversity of the post COVID era.

1. Self-monitor

The first way to develop mental resilience is to check in with yourself. Understand what stresses you, and possibly, avoid them. Some people keep a journal or a log of what gets them stressed. In this journal, you should list the emotions you feel, and the situations that make you feel this way. Having identified these, you wouldn’t react indecisively anymore. You simply determine what path is best to take to help you avoid or manage the stressor.

2. Acceptance

A lot has changed for every one of us, and in such a short time too. Neither of us had any control over all that has happened, so dwelling on these changes or resenting them would do you no good. Simply, accept these changes, by altering your practices to get the most of where you currently are. Of course, you are not responsible for the current situation, you are only responsible for how you react to it. So, build on where you are, and move on.

3. Create a schedule

Covid-19 has destabilized our regular schedules -every one of us. Consequently, it is hard for many to adjust, and readjust. It is up to you to determine what is required of you each day, week, or month, and then make a plan to accomplish them. 

You may have to break larger tasks, into small, easily achievable tasks. If your to-do list is packed, choose the most important tasks first, before those that are not as important. This way, you get the most pressing tasks done and you beat procrastination as well.

4. Physical distance, do not social distance

Of course, as medical advice goes, the best way to stay away from Covid-19 is to stay around 1 meter away from the nearest person who isn’t in your immediate household. I think that should be called physical distancing, not social distancing. Social distancing cuts us off and wears us down. If you are working from home, reach out to your coworkers on the various social platforms or groups you belong or even over video calls. Discuss with your friends and keep in touch regularly. Do these frequently, and don’t forget to help those who are unable to go out for food or groceries.

5. Be optimistic

While this might sound too simplistic, people with optimistic views maintain a higher level of mental resilience. Optimism reduces anxiety and depression -and this can help overcome thoughts that lead to spiraling.

Do not forget to get rid of toxic stressors and also get involved in physical activities. Improved physical health helps improve your mental health too.

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