“I can’t deal with this anymore!” We all must have uttered these words over and over again during the past three weeks of lockdown.
And this morning when we were all glued to our TV screens hoping for an announcement on the end of this house arrest, we suffered a heartbreak. Yes, the lockdown has been extended for 20 more days and we’re housebound till 3rd May.
We know a lot of you must have been panicking and getting anxious about you’ll manage the next few days. And while we all agree that the government is right in extending the lockdown-after all, it is essential to tame the spread of the covid-19 pandemic-it sucks nonetheless.
But hey: sulking won’t make time go by faster. Instead, you must work even harder to maintain good mental health. So, we got our resident expert and clinical psychologist Dr Bhavna Barmi to guide you on how you can cope with the extended lockdown without losing your sanity.
1. For starters, acceptance is the key
We all know that it’s not just us but the entire world that is going through this situation. So, it’s better to accept that there is no other way than to stay in this lockdown. Because guess what? It’s not in our control!
“Accepting the situation will bring a sense of calm in you and you won’t panic thinking about what will happen next,” explains Dr Barmi.
2. Think positive and channelize your thoughts
We know it’s easier said than done especially in a situation like this-but trying never hurts. “The quality of your thoughts defines the kind of life you choose for yourself. Banish anxious thoughts and be more introspective. And once you do that you’ll release that there are numerous ways in which you can add value in your lives during this time,” says Dr Barmi.
3. Decide whether you want to use or abuse this time
Let’s face it: For the first time in a long while, we have all the time in the world to do what we want. On social platforms like LinkedIn you will find various short-term courses that you can do for free or at a minimal charge to enhance your skill set. Similarly, there are plenty of live exercise sessions that can help you get fit.
All you need to do is to get a little perspective on what you really want. “You should take charge to make a constructive, favourable and pleasurable routine during this time and see where it takes you,” says Dr Barmi.
4. Stop being lazy. There, we said!
The biggest problem is that we are too lazy to do anything. We keep on pressing the snooze button on unproductive activities to kill time. And when there are zero outcomes we feel disappointed and disheartened. So, before you blame it the situation, get up and do something that keeps you active and energetic.
5. Engage in productive and rewarding activities
“Exercise, hobbies, self-help skills, social services, and soul-building activities might seem like common suggestions, but they have a large impact on co-existence,” explains Dr Barmi. “Just think of how you would like to remember having made it through this time. Through bonding and developing your skill set or through fear, anxious thoughts, apprehension, and depression?,” she concludes.
The bottom line? We’re in all this together so there is no point victimising yourself
This is not just happening to you-we’re all in the same boat. So instead of focusing on all the things that are going wrong during this lockdown, think about the changes you would want to be reflected in your personality after the lockdown is over. You can either let this lockdown bring you down or take it in your stride. Your choice!