Surviving the new normal

The past few months have been challenging for many of us. The pandemic has affected us in so many ways. Some lost their jobs due to the different quarantine levels.

Plenty of people were stranded for commercial flights were on hold. A few felt worried and sad to the point that they can not function very well. There were so many changes in this “new normal.”

The Department of Health (DOH) identified the paradigm of the “new normal” due to the onslaught of COVID-19. DOH stated that new normal is a new way of thinking about, deciding on, and doing our usual affairs with an invigorated sense to remain healthy.

They mandated ways to reduce the spread of this virus by wearing masks, washing our hands regularly, staying at home, limiting mass activities, and many others.

These are required for us to do. Many followed it but some still have a hard time following these new rules. People were saying, “it is hard to breathe when wearing a mask,” “I don’t want to stay home.”

We must remember that these actions will protect us from the virus. We are not only protecting ourselves but also the people around us especially the vulnerable – the senior citizens, the pregnant women, those with health issues, and young children. Yes, embracing the new normal is difficult but let’s help each other.

Acceptance is the key to everything. It is good for our mental health. Mental health has been recognized as more important than ever.

The World Health Organization (WHO) defines mental health as the way a person thinks, feels, and acts when faced with life’s situations. It is also how we see ourselves, how we relate with other people, and how we cope with the stresses in our lives.

Indeed, this pandemic is very stressful. The new normal is challenging. Many experiences fear. Some are worried.

Here are a few tips to endure our situation:

N – note down important things
E – express yourself (e.g. compose a song, write a poem)
W – welcome new ideas

N – nurture others (e.g. take care of your parents, donate, help others)
O – offer a prayer
R – reach out to talk about your day (meet friends even through video calls)
M – maintain a healthy lifestyle (e.g. exercise, drink plenty of water, sleep at least eight hours)
A – accept things you cannot change
L – laugh and enjoy life

There are many more ways to embrace the new normal. People differ in what makes them happy. However, self-care is also important. Love yourself more. It is something to prioritize and something you deserve.

What if you still feel anxious, sad, or worried that doing your daily tasks is hard? Help is always available.

The province of Negros Occidental believes that mental health matters. They have a Mental Health and Psychosocial Support Helpline. They encourage you to talk to them by calling these numbers: 09615729197 and 0965-982-1851.

You may also contact the Corazon Locsin Montelibano Memorial Regional Hospital (CLMMRH) Mental Health Unit for an appointment at 09420754900 and the Bacolod City Mental Health Care Center at 034-7000647.*

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