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5 Ways of Coping with Depression and Anxiety During COVID

First Posted: Sep 08, 2020 03:41 PM EDT
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Those of us who already suffer from depression and anxiety know how hard it can be to just get through the day, but due to the pandemic that continues to ravage the nation... It's worse. In fact, the number of adult Americans who have reported feeling depressed has increased and now 50% of Americans have said they get feelings of depression.

Although it's best to consult your doctor for treatment, we do have a few ways you can try to stave off those feelings.

1. Consider moving somewhere new

City dwellers have it all. They have access to public transit, plenty of shopping outlets, restaurants and recreational activities. But, another thing cities have is lots of people, which makes it hard to socially distance. As someone who has depression or anxiety, it's completely understandable that these feelings worsen due to the pandemic. People may not wear masks, they crowd together in tight spaces, and there's not much you can do about it. 

In HomeLight's 2020 Q2 report, 37% of real estate agents reported buyers are moving away from the city and are choosing to settle down in the suburbs. Why? Because it's less congested, it's more laid back, and it can help ease a person's depression - especially if they buy a house with a large back yard! If you've been thinking about relocating, now's the time to do it, especially with mortgage rates at an all time low!

2. Avoid negative news stories

Everywhere you look, be it social media, the television, or even the radio, there is something negative being talked about. It's time to stop losing yourself in the negativity because there is only so much a person can take before they crack! So turn off the television, disconnect from the internet and enjoy a good book. Or, if you'd prefer, just stick to Netflix or any other streaming service for entertainment!

3. Embrace the happier things in your life

What makes you happy? What makes you feel good about yourself? Do you enjoy playing video games or reading? Do you have a penchant for making lovely pieces of jewelry or unique paintings? It doesn't matter what you enjoy doing - just do it! By immersing yourself in things that bring you joy, your mood will improve, too.

4. Maintain connections with friends and family

We all have days where we don't want to be bothered and simply don't want to talk to anyone. However, avoiding phone calls, ignoring text messages or emails can make the stay-at-home orders all the more isolating and your depression can worsen. That is why you should always keep in touch with loved ones, even if it's just to say hello. It's the simplest form of human interaction and it can have a huge impact on your overall well-being.

5. Don't neglect other areas of well-being

Spiritual, emotional and physical health may also suffer during the pandemic due to stay at home orders and social distancing. And, although we may not be able to go to a place of worship, a gym or hangout with our friends... There are ways to get around this. For example, instead of going to a gym, walk around your neighborhood or do yard work. Instead of going to a place of worship, set up a corner in your home where you can worship. Or you can even worship virtually. 

Please remember that you aren't alone and there are people who want to help. If you're having a hard time, call the NAMI (National Association on Mental Health) Helpline: 1-800-950-NAMI or text "NAMI" to 741741.

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