At the core, I am a true introvert. I’m content in my home space with my family so quarantining turned out to be quite soothing.
Most of the time.
There have been days since COVID turned our world upside down that have been challenging. I’ve missed my extended family terribly, especially since we were unable to travel to Canada for our annual visits. It was odd waiving to neighbors from afar and relegating most conversations to telephone calls.
Being an entrepreneur can be very isolating especially when your team works remotely. Most of our trade shows were canceled the last two years and visits to our affiliate stores were limited. I missed being able to connect with other business owners so instead, I joined an online networking group and took virtual courses to help reach other businesses. I also texted and emailed fellow business owners to keep in touch.
When I’m feeling disconnected, I remember the last time I wrote in my “joy journal.” That disconnection usually means that it’s been days, maybe weeks, since I wrote in it. Topics range from, “Today, I choose joy by letting go of…” to “Today’s joy list includes…” or “Today, I’m grateful for….” To be honest, jotting down my thoughts is a morning ritual that I let slide at times. During the pandemic daily entries were something I kept as part of my daily routine. As things are going back to a new normal, I find I'm busier and more occupied and my writing habit slips.
Almost every morning I go for a 15-minute walk with my husband before we start our day. I exercise regularly to keep my body healthy but I also do it for my mental health. It’s a way for us to connect and get perspectives on our day, discuss anything that’s pressing or just share stories we heard on NPR.
In the first year of the pandemic, the prevalence of anxiety and depression worldwide increased 25 percent, according to the World Health Organization. Mental health now, more than ever, is a priority on every continent. So often we focus on exercise, which is important. But these days it’s just as important, and in some cases critical, to make sure our mind is getting the care and attention it needs.
So tell us: How have you focused on your mental health during the pandemic?
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