Immunity is important, but your mental health is equally important.
Most people and families are hurting financially right now. And with financial pain comes mental anguish, anxiety, fear and depression. The comic Joey Diaz spoke about the importance of taking care of your mental health in a recent podcast, talking about a recent mental breakdown he had during his enforced lockdown due to Co-vid. And Joey Diaz isn’t a wilting flower of a person either. In telling his story he sounded stricken and overcome with grief, guilt, anxiety, anger and depression.
Mental health during times of isolation can be the most challenging thing of all. And while everyone can put on a brave face, be stoic, and maybe even cope well during forced isolation, it’s not the normal behaviour for most people since people are made to be social. We are social by nature. To have that taken away can feel like a kind of death with all the same feelings you’d feel being torn from a loved one. You might be torn from your loved ones now. And torn from the life you knew, the routine you had, the sense of safety and security we all take for granted.
Then, for so many, it’s doubly bad because of job loss. Being isolated without the means to make your rent or buy food for the month is a scary proposition.
So, what can be done to help us all?
The best thing you could do for yourself during these times is to ask for help. The other best thing you could do is to help someone. Thinking about someone else’s problems and ways to help them is one sure way to stop thinking about your problems. So, there’s that. But you also need to ask for the help you need, and this includes money. There are government programs that help a little bit to offset salary losses, but they hardly go all the way. There are still those who can’t pay rent, utilities, or afford to eat. With these things I suggest you be upfront with landlords, banks, utility companies and even your grocer. You can negotiate with all these entities, though the grocer might not budge. But if not the grocer then maybe your friends and neighbours. Many of us keep our problems to ourselves and we suffer in silence and alone when we don’t really have to. Anyone worth calling themselves a human being will help you when you’re in a bind. And if they don’t, then you know all you need to know about them and what they stand for. When the world does get back in its feet it will be the companies and people who helped that we all will champion. And for those who don’t help, we will remember them, too.
It’s time for us to take the best care of each other and ourselves. It takes trying. But there’s nothing more precious or special than people. And you are one.
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