You may be wondering how to stay sane during these extreme world stressors! No doubt we are all feeling a little anxious and stressed right now. However, with the war being the main subject of conversations, images and information on every news channel and splashed across social media, it is difficult to turn a blind eye or pretend it is not a reality.
Most of us are trying to recover and process the last two years’ events with the worldwide pandemic and its many repercussions. Yet, we have to wrap our heads around another devastating event somehow!
Assessing Your Mental State – You NEED to Stay Sane
Feelings of anxiety, distress or even heartbreak are all completely normal responses to what is happening around us! However, our complete access to news updates makes it seem like the crisis is unfolding at our doorstep and not kilometres away.
People are exhausted and on edge as we have all been living in a state of suspended trauma for the last couple of years, and this conflict only increases this.
Set Yourself A Routine
- Our brains seem to be more comfortable when things are consistent and patterned.
- Routine helps us keep structured and predictable
- Start simple with a set sleeping schedule
- Making your bed every morning or taking a walk simultaneously every day.
- Allow certain times a day to talk openly about the war and your emotions.
Take Care of Yourself
- Physical activity is highly beneficial to your state of mind.
- Exercising releases endorphins which are needed for your mental well-being.
- Drink plenty of water. Try a minimum of eight glasses per day.
- Ensure to eat regularly and as healthy as possible.
- Get enough sleep!
- Meditation and Yoga are highly recommended.
- Try to avoid alcohol or any drug as a coping mechanism.
- Manage your exposure to information regarding the war.
- Ensure you take regular breaks from the news and social media.
- Put your phone down and keep it in a separate room when possible.
- Instead of scrolling on your phone to keep yourself occupied by doing something you enjoy.
- As events unfold hour to hour, try to stick to only checking for updates 2 or 3 times a day.
- Limit your access by turning off smartphone notifications, switching off the tv or closing social media.
- Set yourself time windows for viewing or reading up on the latest war news.
- Avoid conspiracy theories and negative agendas.
- With the amount of misinformation out there, ensure to use credible sources.
- Do not get carried away with hype about what could happen. Take things one day at a time.
- Friends and family should be reached out to often and try to socialise often.
- Share your thoughts and feelings regarding the war.
- When we feel supported, it helps our confidence.
- Not everybody has loved ones. Reach out to a mental health care professional or a support group.
- You should consider this if you are struggling with sleep or negative thoughts.
- Speak to your children if they are worried or visibly stressed.
Playing Your Part
- Engaging in community projects or charities will create a sense of hope.
- Unfortunately, a few are using this war to their benefit, and not all proceeds are used as intended.
- Ensure the organisation donates directly to those affected by war.
- Voices of Children, The Ukrainian Red Cross, UNICEF and The UN’s Ukraine Humanitarian Fund are all charities that donate directly to refugees.
Finding Peace in War – You Can Practice to Stay Sane and Help
As with Covid, we are finding it becoming a compulsive need to stay tuned into the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which is taking a negative toll on our mental health. The fact that the war is still ongoing means we struggle to disengage as fear of the unknown causes extreme anxiety. While we have suggested a few ways to cope better, you will know the best path forward for your mental health. Disengaging and setting routines certainly do help in keeping you sane.