Depression is an illness affecting millions of people around the world. Undoubtedly, this pandemic can play quite a nasty role in terms of mental illness. For some, social isolation can trigger depression for the first time around or worsen depressive symptoms if already diagnosed. Being cut off from the love, support, and close contact of family and friends is certainly enough to prompt feelings of sadness. For this reason, it is crucial to recognize how to manage such emotions. Here, I will be explaining just that!

When negative thoughts appear, they may seem uncontrollable as you get yourself in what seems to be an eternal loop, but there are ways to distract and cope. To change your way of thinking, focus on something that adds meaning to your life. This purpose can appear in many forms. Outdoor activities: hiking, biking, and walking, even gardening have been proven to elevate your mood, and then there are indoor activities: cooking, games, or reading. These activities can help you bring peace of mind and fortify you against destructive thinking. 

Additionally, more robust activities with extensive research point to yoga and meditation as a couple of the best habits for alleviating depression. Yoga offers benefits beyond the physical realm since you practice mindfulness. Even though many yoga centers are closed, you can still find online programs, having courses ranging from beginner to advanced. Like yoga, mediation offers you the chance to practice mindfulness. When mindfulness is eventually cultivated, the individual can learn to respond to stress while keeping awareness of the present moment. 

No one knew where this pandemic would take us, or how long it would last or how much longer it will last. As humans, we have to accept the circumstances and learn to adapt; thus, we must have fun, be spontaneous! Taking the time for your well-being is more important now than ever before. Remember, it is important to keep yourself busy with what you love; good thoughts attract good things!

Eric Ames, reporter

Library Mental Health