Pandemic Fatigue - What Is It & How to Beat it?
Nowadays wearing a mask, staying physically distanced from others, and sanitizing/washing your hands constantly has become a daily norm. Has living under the pandemic conditions begun to wear you out? You are not alone. Millions around the world have also had to adapt to the adjusted living changes due to the threat of the pandemic. But what exactly is pandemic fatigue? Is it serious? And what can help you beat pandemic fatigue?
What is Pandemic Fatigue?
Pandemic fatigue is a term used to describe the natural reaction of people towards the ongoing & prolonged situation caused by the pandemic. Everyone's reaction may be different, but here are a few common signs of pandemic fatigue:
- Lack of motivation
- Difficulty concentrating
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Changing eating/sleeping habits
- Easily stressing out over tasks that you normally handle just fine
Is It Serious?
Pandemic fatigue can be a serious threat to both our own safety and those of others. As the pandemic has now continued for months, we may begin to slowly become complacent and lose our motivation to follow strictly to safety practices such as wearing a mask. We may be so tired of living under these strict restrictions that we begin to develop a negative attitude and try to find ways for greater freedom which could potentially put ourselves and others at higher health risks. What can help us cope?
1. Physical Distancing - Not Social Distancing
It is not good to stay isolated over long periods of time as it can significantly impact both our mental and physical health. So although we are encouraged to stay physically distant from others due to the pandemic, we can still make efforts to stay socially connected with our friends and family.Be creative and schedule ahead! Get a group together online to play games.
Feeling down? Irritated? Lonely? Don't sulk alone. Reach out to friends and family through video calls, phone calls, text, and emails! Talk it out with someone and share tips on how to cope. Take the time to check in to see how others are doing - when we find ways to show kindness and give to others it could reduce our stress, boost our mood, and help make us feel happier.
2. Be Positive - Make the Best of Your Situation
Because of the pandemic restrictions, do you find yourself suddenly having a lot more time on your hand? As a result, do you feel more bored, unmotivated, or irritated? If that's the case, try to focus on what you can do with your time rather than constantly reminiscing of your life prior to the pandemic. Take advantage of this precious opportunity to do things you couldn't do before. For example, can you think of any hobby you wanted to learn but didn't have the time for before? Maybe you can start pursuing it now. As mentioned above, instead of spending the time constantly isolated and binge watching tv or scrolling through social media, try to make the effort to stay in touch with your family and friends.
3. Make a Schedule & Stick to It
Because of the "extra" time on our hands, our schedule may be all over the place. But doing that can cause more irritability and stress. So, instead of just doing things on the whim, plan your week out. Make a daily schedule and try to stick to it. Checking off our daily schedule can also make us feel more productive and effective, which in turn can boost our mood! We may feel more settled and happier after a long, busily planned day. Revise and adjust your schedule as needed, but try to keep it consistent.