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New Year Mental Health Resolutions Post-COVID

New Year Mental Health Resolutions Post-COVID

2021 is ending and you are ready to welcome 2022. Though the new year comes with new hopes, new goals, and new resolutions. It is no surprise that 2021 have significantly impacted our mental health and one main reason is COVID-19. The pandemic caused fear about exposure to infection, social isolation (Ma et al., 2016), psychological distress, loss of employment (Kim & von dem Knesebeck, 2016), grief and trauma (Van Bortel et al., 2016), risk of depression and suicidality (James et al., 2019), and much more.

Moreover, COVID-19 took a toll on mental health leading to post-traumatic stress, acute stress, insomnia, anxiety, depression, decreased attention, and irritability (Brooks et al., 2020; Gualano et al., 2020). Everyone is affected by it one way or the other and unfortunately, the pandemic continues into the coming year.
Considering such deteriorating effects, won’t it be unfair if you don’t integrate mental health into your New Year’s Resolutions! Let’s have a look at 4 ways you can make mental health a priority this year.
4 New Year Resolutions Post-COVID Goals:

Reflect More Often:

Accumulation of experience is one of the most important sources of learning (Argote & Miron-Spektor, 2011). The end of the year is the right time to pause, sit back and reflect. Reflect on things that truly matter to you, the coping skills you learned, and set measurable goals. Self-reflection can helps you to be aware of your thoughts, emotions, values, and needs. Hence, for 2022, make it a habit.

Meditate Daily:

One of the most important things considering the COVID-19 is to build resilience and meditation is one of the best practices to achieve it. In addition, to resilience, meditation has a lot of benefits for both physical and mental health. It enhances self-awareness, reduces stress, and anxiety, promotes emotional health, improves sleep, mood and self-discipline. You don’t have to spend a whole lot of time on it. Just start by practicing, 5 minutes a day and reap its benefits for the rest of your life.

Practice Acceptance and Gratitude:

With all the shortcomings and challenges faced during the COVID-19, you may find it difficult to keep a positive outlook and optimism. However, a simple practice can do it all. Practicing acceptance and gratitude makes you confident about potential life outcomes, enhances optimism and the feeling that you can control future events (Lambert et al., 2009).
What you need to do is that either at the start or end of the day, it’s up to you, write three things that you are grateful for. It can be a cold breeze that made you relax or the breath that keeps you alive and see the difference.

Declutter Your Mind:

To deal with the challenges of life, it is best to make decisions after you have carefully thought it through. Setting up a routine and planning ahead reduces your stress, improves your sleep, enhances concentration, mood, and overall wellbeing. Get rid of unwanted things present in your surrounding or your mind.

Conclusion:

As we are talking about mental health, what works for others may not work for you. Hence, experiment with different ideas. Try some strategies mentioned above or bring out something new. What’s important is to be compassionate and kind to yourself and make your mental health a priority in 2022.

References:

Argote, L., & Miron-Spektor, E. (2011). Organizational learning: From experience to knowledge. Organization Science, 22(5), 1123–1137. https://doi.org/10.1287/orsc.1100.0621
Brooks, S. K., Webster, R. K., Smith, L. E., Woodland, L., Wessely, S., Greenberg, N., & Rubin, G. J. (2020). The psychological impact of quarantine and how to reduce it: Rapid review of the evidence. Lancet (London, England), 395(10227), 912–920. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30460-8
Gualano, M. R., Lo Moro, G., Voglino, G., Bert, F., & Siliquini, R. (2020). Effects of Covid-19 Lockdown on Mental Health and Sleep Disturbances in Italy. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 17(13), 4779. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijerph17134779
James, P. B., Wardle, J., Steel, A., & Adams, J. (2019). Post-Ebola psychosocial experiences and coping mechanisms among Ebola survivors: A systematic review. Tropical Medicine & International Health: TM & IH, 24(6), 671–691. https://doi.org/10.1111/tmi.13226
Kim, T. J., & von dem Knesebeck, O. (2016). Perceived job insecurity, unemployment and depressive symptoms: A systematic review and meta-analysis of prospective observational studies. International Archives of Occupational and Environmental Health, 89(4), 561–573. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00420-015-1107-1
Lambert, N. M., Graham, S. M., Fincham, F. D., & Stillman, T. F. (2009). A changed perspective: How gratitude can affect sense of coherence through positive reframing. The Journal of Positive Psychology, 4(6), 461–470. https://doi.org/10.1080/17439760903157182
Ma, J., Batterham, P. J., Calear, A. L., & Han, J. (2016). A systematic review of the predictions of the Interpersonal–Psychological Theory of Suicidal Behavior. Clinical Psychology Review, 46, 34–45. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cpr.2016.04.008
Van Bortel, T., Basnayake, A., Wurie, F., Jambai, M., Koroma, A. S., Muana, A. T., Hann, K., Eaton, J., Martin, S., & Nellums, L. B. (2016). Psychosocial effects of an Ebola outbreak at individual, community and international levels. Bulletin of the World Health Organization, 94(3), 210–214. https://doi.org/10.2471/BLT.15.158543