Life as we know it has changed dramatically over the past year. Just as you get used to one new way of life, everything changes again. You may have experienced change in your work situation, home life or social life.
And, you may be one of many men who are facing uncertainty or experiencing disruption in everyday life.
“Living with the constant threat of lockdowns, or other COVID-19-related change, is unsettling for many of us.”
Living with the constant threat of lockdowns, or other COVID-19-related change, is unsettling for many of us. Staying strong when change occurs isn’t easy – especially when you have a family or are caring for others. To effectively cope with change, it’s essential for you to take care of your mental health.
Here are some tips for coping with change and navigating the unknown.
Accept that change is inevitable
Coping with change requires you to accept that change is an inevitable part of life. The sooner you can adjust your outlook and accept change, the earlier you can develop effective coping strategies.
It may be easier to accept gradual changes than sudden changes like a snap lockdown or job loss. But remembering that change is a normal and healthy part of life can help you cope with those unexpected changes.
Reframe your response to change
You may not be able to control a situation causing a sudden change in your life, but you can always control your response and how you view change.
When changes occur in your life, look for opportunities and try not to dwell. You’re stuck at home when you enjoy going to the office, so how can you make the best of being at home? Or perhaps you can’t go to the gym; could you take up another outdoor activity?
Manage your stress levels and look after your wellbeing
Coping with change can be draining, so managing your stress levels is an essential aspect of staying positive. Experiencing some stress in response to a sudden change is normal, but if you don’t manage your emotions you may experience further mental health problems.
Make sure you have good strategies for maintaining your stress levels. Get a good night’s sleep every night, try relaxation breathing exercises, and limit exposure to your stressors, including news and social media.
Living a healthy lifestyle can help to keep you mentally strong in the face of change and any related adversity. Remember to:
- Eat mostly fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean protein
- Avoid processed foods high in salt and sugar
- Limit alcohol and caffeine
- Drink plenty of water.
Coping with change: Where to get help
If you’re struggling to cope with the changes in your life, it’s essential to talk about your feelings and ask for help before things get worse. Phone MensLine Australia on 1300 78 99 78 or talk to a trusted friend, family member or healthcare professional.
MensLine Australia is the national telephone and online support, information and referral service for men with family and relationship concerns. Our counsellors also support men who have concerns about their mental health and emotional wellbeing.
If you need someone to talk to, MensLine Australia professional counsellors are here to provide information and support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.