By: Andreea Oprescu

The COVID-19 pandemic has placed numerous struggles and strains on various individuals and their mental health. As number of cases increase, the government has imposed certain restrictions that have caused many individuals to spend more time at home and not be able to practice their lifestyles, schedules, or routines, causing a drastic change in the new normal that everyone is accustomed to. As a result, below are some coping mechanisms to help overcome the strains the pandemic has placed on all of us:

  1. Spend as much time as possible with family as these times call for emotional support; schedule relaxing activities such as game nights or movie nights.
  2. Develop a hobby such as learning something new such as learning a new language or improving a skill. For example, Duolingo is a free and popular app that can teach users a language of their choice.
  3. Exercising can improve blood circulation and give mood a much-needed boost. Despite gyms or community centres being closed; certain exercise routines can be performed at home such as yoga. You can also search for exercises and class tutorials online, just follow along the instructor’s directions.
  4. Eating healthy can also boost your mood. Although junk food can be the most pleasing option, try to consume it in moderation. Vegetables and fruits should be the basis of your diet as they are rich in minerals and vitamins that ultimately have a large influence on your mood.
  5. Maintain contact with friends and family, even though it may not be possible to meet. You can maintain contact virtually by calling them or scheduling a video call with them and offering support. This will help both parties feel reassured. Additionally, certain video games can be played online with peers, such as the World of Warcraft and the Call of Duty franchises.
  6. Relax your mind, distract yourself by reading a novel, watching a movie or start watching a show.
  7. Begin a new home project: since most time is spent at home, take a step back and think what in your home could use organizing or improving. Maybe there is a closet that needs organizing and sorting, or maybe there is a wardrobe overflowing with old clothes that have not been brought to the light in years.
  8. Begin a new artistic project: similarly, to the previous point, begin an artistic project such as writing a novel or working on a painting. Focusing on a new project can help you remain occupied. It can also be therapeutic as many individuals find escapism in their craft.  
  9. Schedule rest and relaxation for yourself. Take a bubble bath, do a self manicure or pedicure or meditate. Even if it means being alone, we all need alone time occasionally.
  10. Never lose hope. After every storm there is sun and Canada is improving as COVID-19 cases are slowly decreasing.