It’s been three years since reports of Covid infections began surfacing and we’re nearly two years into a global pandemic. Outbreaks can be stressful times and a global pandemic can be even tougher. It’s not surprising that, for many of us, pandemic fatigue has set in.
It’s normal to feel the effects of depression and anxiety as we continue into the pandemic. Between changes in work or school, the constant stress of trying to avoid infection, and the relentless news cycles, many of us have felt some impact on our mental health.
Signs You Might Be Feeling Pandemic Fatigue
Have you been feeling pandemic fatigue? While it may be easy to write these off as normal fluctuations in your mental state, some of these may be signs that you’re experiencing pandemic fatigue.
Feeling Anxious, Overwhelmed, And Unmotivated
Many of us are dealing with a new home-work balance. Even if you haven’t had changes to your schedule, it’s likely that someone you know or love has. We may feel anxiety about the future as our lives change. During a pandemic, this can take on a new level of difficulty—leaving us feeling exhausted and overwhelmed by the prospect of taking on more responsibilities.
Tension At Home
Whether you or a loved one has lost a job or started working from home, there may have been some changes in your home. We may find ourselves sharing workspaces as we make video calls—and spending more time in a closer proximity to those we live with. It can be a challenging time relearning our living habits together as our schedules change.
Low Self Esteem (Including Zoom dysmorphia)
Many of us have begun to use video conferencing software, such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, or Google Meet recently. We also may be spending more time at home than ever before, and the impacts this can have on our self esteem are important.
Many people report feeling the effects of “Zoom dysmorphia,” where we begin seeing things we don’t like while looking at our own faces for extended periods on video calls. This can leave us feeling hypercritical of our own appearance, and you may be feeling lower self esteem as you spend more time on camera.
Feeling Depressed, Lonely, Or Isolated
This may seem obvious, but changes in our social lives can have a profound impact on our mental health. During a pandemic, we might find that we’re constantly trying to toe a careful line between risking the health of our loved ones and getting much needed human contact. This can leave us feeling drained, depressed, and isolated—as well as guilty—whether we see our loved ones or not.
Tips For Coping With Pandemic Fatigue
Pandemic fatigue is real, and you may have noticed some of these signs, or maybe even others. There are some things we can do, though, that may help us navigate these new times. It’s important to protect our physical health, but it’s also important that we protect our mental health as we do that.
Reach Out To Those Around You
The sense of loneliness and isolation we might feel during a pandemic can be debilitating. If you find yourself feeling lonely much of the time, consider reaching out to those around you.
Even if you’re concerned about social distancing, there are some ways we can safely spend time in one another’s company, while still minimizing the risk of infection. This might be a weekly video call where you play online games such as Chess or watch movies together—or it may just be regular phone calls. Seeing the faces of, and hearing from, loved ones can be surprisingly comforting.
Developing New Rituals
It may be time to develop new rituals at home. Is it hard to turn off work mode at the end of the day when you’re working from home? Consider devising an evening ritual that signifies the end of your work day, or even your childrens’ school days.
This might be an “appetizer hour” before dinner, or maybe even a family meeting about how everyone’s day went. As humans, we’re creatures of habit, so enacting routines can help us feel structure in our day, even if we’ve been at home the entire time.
Opening Up With Our Loved Ones
It may be time to open up with our loved ones about how we’re feeling and how our actions affect one-another. Many of us live in closer proximity than ever before, so it’s important to reach out and let our loved ones know how we’re doing.
Therapy At Love Heal Grow
Therapy is one of the best things you can do for your mental health whether you’re already feeling burned out or you’re worried you might be in the future. There’s never a bad time to go to therapy, and working with a therapist is one of the best ways to protect your mental health. Starting therapy will mean that you have a mental healthcare professional on your team as you navigate the uncertain future.
Even if you’ve taken all these steps, you might still be feeling the effects of pandemic fatigue. We are living through unprecedented times. Nobody knows what the future holds, and it’s normal to feel overwhelmed and anxious about what comes next.
But you don’t have to do this alone. Schedule an appointment with Love Heal Grow today, and we can help you find ways to cope with new changes, navigate an uncertain future, and find solace—even in unprecedented times.