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Counsellor shares tips on how to stay mentally strong during COVID-19

It can be stressful having to cope with COVID-19 and sometimes, you’re not sure how to deal with it.

Registered Clinical Counsellor Shawn McNabb says it can be as simple as setting a routine for yourself.

“Getting up at a certain time each morning, going to bed at a regular time. Take the screen time away before bed to get enough sleep. Engaging in self-care practices is big.”

He says while not being able to see our friends and family in person can take a toll on us, digital options are always a great alternative to keep that connection strong.

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“Obviously social distancing doesn’t have to be the case. You can (talk) through phone and media and (there are) other ways (that) you can still connect with family or loved ones. Talking about your worries can sometimes be helpful, putting it out instead of keeping it in.”

McNabb also says a solution for those dealing with fear during the pandemic can come from looking at the good things, and not the bad.

Many children don’t understand why they can’t go outside and visit friends. McNabb says to combat this, you should just give them the information they need to know and reassure them that everything will be fine.

“I think it is being upfront with a child but only telling them the concrete pieces – the need to know versus the more abstract pieces.”

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“For instance, what’s in their daily routine? How can they understand it more? Understanding that mom and dad are helping you, and we’ll let you know as you need to know what’s important, but right now we’re looking at keeping us all safe and we’re doing the best we can to do that.”

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