We’re under a substantial amount of mental strain that stems from limited physical social interaction and outdoor experiences, being forced out of our familiar routines, the pressure of a frightening reality that we can’t numb our way through and the daily reminders of an uncertain future.
It’s dangerous then to assume that we’re open to an unending barrage of public information and demands from work, family or friends because we have “all this free time.”
That’s a misconception that can do serious damage to mental health.
Now more than ever, we desperately need to respect each other’s boundaries and limitations.
1. Not texting or calling at what was considered odd hours before the pandemic. Even a powerful virus can’t change the nature of time.
2. Not piling on more than is necessary, be it tasks or conversation.
3. Leaving enough room to process new information at a normal rate. Don’t expect replies to come quicker than before.
4. Accepting that COVID-19 isn’t the only acceptable reason to be sick and unavailable. Shockingly, headaches, malaria and diarrhoea are still real and happening.
5. Sticking to a strict schedule that clearly delineates work, play, meal times and rest (aka ‘do nothing’ time). Watching the news isn’t rest, by the way.
We’re all at risk now.
Let’s not add mental illness to an already awful situation.