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Six months into the pandemic, here are things you can do to cope

Posted at 1:34 PM, Sep 09, 2020

We are now six months into the pandemic, and there are issues that health professionals are seeing.

Terri Mehlhoff, APRN, FNP, Clinic Manager, Salt Lake Community College, says humans are hardwired for socialization. But today, life is not normal. We are socially isolated and even fearing each other. Many have lost their jobs, income and daily routine. And we are still uncertain when it will end.

The result is we're dealing with much more emotional and psychological stress.

Mehlhoff says there are things we can do to cope:

Regain a sense of control: Start or reclaim your self-care routine. Taking time for yourself is not selfish. Prioritize sleep, eat a nutrient dense diet, be physically active and spend time outside. Think about decreasing the amount of time you spend sedentary rather than just exercise. Research has shown time in nature is just as important for health as sleep, exercise and a healthy diet.

Employ mindfulness: Your patterns of thought affect your perceptions of stress. Reframe the situation, look for a more positive light. Stay present in every situation, and take deep breaths. Learn to accept the things you can't change. You can also practice gratitude or start a gratitude journal.

Mehlhoff recommends downloading a mindfulness app like Headspace or Calm or go to clevelandclinnic.com to learn more about coping.

You can also visit slcc.edu for more information on Salt Lake Community College.