How to Improve Your Mental Health in 2021
By the middle of 2020, 1 in 5 adults were suffering from depression, which is twice the number in 2019. Many people are facing PTSD-like trauma, which people have aptly named post-pandemic traumatic stress disorder. As we enter 2021, we should be looking to move away from statistics like this and to a future filled with better mental health in the UK.
But how is this possible with the Covid-19 pandemic still looming over us? Many of us are already bracing ourselves for another year of stress, disappointment and poor mental health. However, by taking on the following advice, you can look to 2021 with much more enthusiasm and hope. By building up defences and learning how to protect and improve your mental health, you can ensure that no matter what is thrown your way, you know how to handle it emotionally.
Stick to the Rules
One of the biggest reasons people will be anxious and stressed in 2021 is due to wondering how and when we will go back to some form of ordinary life. After a year of lockdowns, people want to feel normal again, with summer holidays, hugs with family and date nights to make them feel happy. With the vaccination rollout being such a success, it can lead many into a false sense of security and have them bend the rules because ‘I’m protected now’.
However, this isn’t the case. We are still working to vaccinate as much of the nation as possible, and restrictions are still in place to protect us. The more rules we break, the higher the likelihood of the R rising with more transmissions. If you are anxious and stressed over when you will next get to visit family, remember that as long as you are sticking to the rules and encouraging those around you to do so too, PM Boris Johnson’s roadmap should remain as it is, and a better future is not too far away.
Put Yourself First
As we’ve traversed the various lockdowns, many of us have been reaching out to other family and friends and supporting each other through these confusing times, no matter the risk on our mental health. However, in 2021, we need to bring this focus a little closer to home. It’s time we start putting our mental health and wellbeing back at the top. I’m not saying don’t care about friends or family, but rather don’t disregard your own happiness.
Take some time to do the things you love as restrictions ease, whether that’s a solo walk in the park, a meeting with friends outdoors or some therapy shopping once the town centre reopens. Even getting away to a different room in the house every so often for alone time can help you find quiet in a place that has been overwhelmed with stay-at-home workers and students.
Therapy has already seen a considerable overhaul in attitudes towards it. Previously, people were judged and mocked for asking others for mental health guidance and advice. However, people are much more accepting and understanding of the many benefits that therapy can bring.
Therapy is perfect for people who need that extra expert guidance and advice around mental health. Our minds are complex and often confusing and having someone to help you understand your thoughts, emotions and behaviours and how to overcome mental health issues is a great support. In therapy, you can get to the root cause of problems like anxiety and depression and work with an expert like myself to learn how to prevent these from overwhelming your life.
Please take a look at my website to learn more about my services as a therapist and how I can support your mental health journey. 2021 isn’t going to be an easy year, but we can still make the most of this stressful and tense phase of the Covid-19 pandemic with the proper support and optimistic outlook.