This article was created in partnership with Osmind.
Even though the world has generally “re-opened”, the COVID-19 pandemic has had a lasting effect on the way people connect with each other. Many people to feel like they don’t have a support system there to help them. Feelings of isolation and loneliness can bring themselves to the forefront of daily life. It is important to know that you are not alone, and that there are things you can do to mitigate these feelings.
Use coping skills
It’s okay to feel lonely or isolated. If these emotions are making you feel more anxious or depressed, think about the coping skills you have available. These might include:
- Taking twenty minutes to journal about exactly how you are feeling
- Getting some exercise, or simply spending time outdoors
- Practicing meditation using an app or prerecorded video
Find ways to let your emotions out in a healthy way. Burying your emotions isn’t a good long-term solution—sooner or later, they’ll come out anyway!
Find ways to have human connection each day
Connecting with other people in person is best, but not always possible. Call family members or friends when feelings of isolation set in, or make weekly virtual plans to eat together, talk, or watch a movie together. Ensuring that you have some social interaction each day—even if virtually—can help you to recreate the environment and support system that you may have had before if was disrupted by COVID-19 or other factors.
Join online communities
If you need more connection with others or resources for mental health, joining online communities can be a good way to find both. Through these communities, you can find people from all over the world who may be experiencing or have experienced the same feelings and emotions that you are. This is an excellent way to gain support from others while also learning new information about topics that you may be interested in.
Osmind offers an online patient community for people with treatment-resistant mental health disorders, their mental health providers, and those passionate about innovative mental health treatments.
Most importantly, take care of yourself. Eat what will make you happy. Choose to disengage from technology if you aren’t feeling it. Get some physical activity if it makes you feel good and you have the ability to. We are living through a unique combination of connectivity and isolation, with a whole host of new and sometimes terrifying experiences and emotions. Just getting through it is an immense accomplishment!