Overcoming Remote Relationships And Online Fatigue

Many of us are in home-quarantine, relying on laptops and mobile phones to stay connected. Since we use them in school and at work, we’ve grown attached to our devices, but this pandemic made us realize that digital connections are a must. With the COVID-19 crisis putting pressure on our physical, emotional, and mental well-being, it also affects our interpersonal relationships.

Experts argue that we can no longer go back to the old normal. As restaurants, transportation, and office establishments prepare to open, the new normal would require us to temperature checks and entry registrations for contact tracing measures. Overnight, we added the phrase “social distancing” into our vernacular and installed videoconferencing apps on our computers.

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This pandemic saw us turning to remote workers for advice. However, they have also encountered challenges staying at home, breaking routine social interactions used to balance the amount of time they were isolated. Even long-distance couples have some tips to overcome loneliness, but not all of our connections are intimate relationships that we can straightaway bond over our LED screens.

Pandemic Blues

Psychologists say that more people are prone to social anxiety because we are opening up our homes and personal spaces to others, even in professional contexts. Quarantine-induced Zoom fatigue is real. The simple fact is that every video conference reminds us of how much our lives have changed, how we’ve lost connections and opportunities, and how unlikely it is for the situation to be “business as usual.”

Due to unprecedented scenarios, workplace managers and school teachers had to figure out the new classroom and office dynamics. We hear questions like “How much time should I see my students online? How frequently should I hold department meetings with my staff?” Nobody could have prepared us for this, yet we strive to become resilient and test out what works. How do we overcome the pressures of remote relationships amidst the pandemic?

Virtual Safe Spaces

COVID-19 urged mental health practitioners to move to virtual counseling, also known as teletherapy. The Kaiser Family Foundation conducted a survey and found 45% of Americans reported feeling distressed due to pandemic circumstances. The study enumerated concerns like financial strain, social isolation, and fear of infection, especially for frontline workers in healthcare and essential services.

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“Teletherapy has been more difficult for my consumers under the age of 12 because they’re looking all around, asking me 101 questions,” says Dr. DeAnna Murphy, LPC, a licensed professional counselor who practices in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Since the quarantine started, she’s received an uptick in calls from people dealing with anxiety and depression. Virtual therapy sessions have some advantages as well as disadvantages.

  • Recreating The Space

Taking the velvet couch from a therapist’s office to a Zoom call is the biggest challenge. Individuals will have to replicate the comfort and ambiance in their own homes, which, for some, might be the source of anxiety in the first place. To overcome this, Murphy suggests her clients sit in the car or walk around the block and call her.

  • Keeping Privacy

Sometimes, loneliness intensifies even when we’re sharing a space with other people. COVID-19 has us leaning onto our friends, partners, family, and colleagues. At some point, everyone’s bound to feel emotionally overloaded, so having a therapist or counselor can help.

  • Saving Resources

For clients undergoing in-person therapy, an appointment would typically take two hours, including travel time, while a virtual session can be over in fifty minutes. Murphy says teletherapy works well for individuals with mild symptoms, which means lower anxiety levels or less debilitating depression. 

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Online fatigue and long-distance relationships can take a toll on our health. We should learn how to identify the triggers and specific stressors before we try to cope with them. Here are some examples:

  1. If a meeting doesn’t need to be a Zoom meeting, consider a phone call. Not seeing ourselves or 12 people on the screen can reduce stress linked to our self-consciousness.
  2. Swap your end-of-the-world dystopian reading lists with escapist fiction or romance novels. If your kids like to play video games, avoid themes of disease outbreaks or zombies.
  3. Conduct a pulse check and determine whether you’re jumping in a Zoom call because you want to or because you feel you have to. Joining calls that you’re not committed to adds to the strain when all you need at the moment is to get a break.

When every day turns out to be a test of competence, it’s easy to lose our direction when barriers break, spaces combine, and lines blur together. What we need to reclaim control of our relationships with others is to accept that we are tired. We need to recover using tools available to us and strengthen the ways we cope – both online and offline.

Coping With Your Mental Health Struggles

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The Global Mental Health Summit 2019 talked about the most misunderstood topic in the whole world – mental health. People can be very inconsiderate, especially those who are not welcoming of new studies and changes. One must understand that mental health is as important as physical health. Actually, for me, mental health is a mile much more important than physical health. If your mind is not in tiptop shape, your body will follow suit. And have you heard of the saying “think past the pain” (physical pain that is)? It just means that the mind is “in-charge” of the body. Now, why should we take it for granted?

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Time Of Pandemic: Taking Care Of Your Mental Health

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This year has been a challenging time for our society. The World Health Organization (WHO) declared a global pandemic last March 11. The COVID-19 has been rapidly spreading across 185 countries, with more than 2.2 million cases and counting. It continues to spread, with death toll alarmingly on the rise.

Governments around the world try to “flatten the curve” by implementing extreme procedures to slow down the spread, enough for the current number of cases to be within the capacity of healthcare institutions. For most countries, this means extreme Draconian measures to keep the virus outbreak at bay.

From strict lockdowns, travel bans, forced closure of establishments, the prohibition of mass gatherings, and social distancing— daily routines were forced to change abruptly.

Adapting into this new way of life or the new normal as they say, and the fear of contracting COVID-19 itself can be stressful and lead to anxiety. It can be overwhelming, taking a toll on everyone’s mental health. Sudden disengagement from society can also make coping with this fear and anxiety, especially hard.

With the COVID-19 pandemic negatively impacting numerous facets of our community, it is essential to take steps to ensure the care of your own and your family’s mental health.

COVID-19 Pandemic’s Impact On Your Mental Health

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As people are unique, the pandemic’s effect can significantly vary from one person to another. During this pandemic, your mental health can be considerably affected by stress, anxiety, fear, sadness, and loneliness. “Given the circumstances, feeling anxious is part of a normal response to what’s going on,” Joshua Gordon, M.D., Ph.D., points out.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental health can manifest in different ways. It is crucial to keep an eye out for such occurrences in yourself, your family, and even your friends. It can worsen with the uncertainty as to when things will get better, but it is preventable by taking specific measures.

Practices To Improve Mental Health During COVID-19 Pandemic

  • Be Careful Of What You Read From The News

Repeatedly hearing negative news about the pandemic can be upsetting. Taking a break or setting a scheduled time to get updates about the situation can be helpful.

  • Take Care Of Your Body

Taking steps to take care of your body is vital in attaining good overall health. It is crucial to building the immune system not only to avoid the virus but also to feel good physically. Remember to eat healthily, drink water, and exercise. It is also essential to get enough rest and sleep.

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  • Do Leisure Activities

Although the measures imposed by the government will likely prevent most of us from going out and doing our hobbies, it is still essential to unwind and relax. You can explore new ways to entertain yourself or even discover new hobbies and talents. Doing so will help ease some anxiety and help yourself feel good mentally.

  • Stay Connected With People

Thanks to technology, connecting with people is now more accessible, even without stepping a foot outside of your home. Staying in touch with friends and family can help you, as well as them, get through these hard times. Sharing how you feel or even seeing that they are doing well can put the mind at ease.

  • Set Goals And Priorities

The pandemic can hamper our productivity and ability to concentrate. Tasks typically done may seem insignificant or more tiresome while dealing with issues brought by the pandemic. It is helpful to prioritize and organize what needs to be accomplished immediately, not to get overwhelmed.

Final Thoughts

Indeed, the current global pandemic is challenging. Isolation and social distancing do not mean that you are alone in this fight. Although the steps enumerated above can be done by oneself, seeking professional help or comfort from friends and family can also be an option.

Navigating this uncertainty is hard, but not impossible. It will test our resilience, but we will come out of it more reliable. Taking care of our mental health is not only crucial to our overall health. If we are mentally healthy, we will be able to look out for others as well and even contribute to our communities.

Mental Health Is As Important As Physical Health

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The 2017 Mental Health Summit was an awakening for me. The whole point of the event was to discuss the mental health of children. Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant was present in that summit, and as they say, it was a record-breaking event in terms of attendance. There were around 350 attendees on that event, which shows that people these days are interested to know more about the mental health issues that can plague children, which include behavioral, personality disorders, and more. Of course, the Governor was the one who opened the general session.

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Therapy: How To Remove Stress In Your Life 

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Stress is inevitable or something that you could not avoid. According to Mary K. Tatum, LMHC, “Stress is variable and affects everyone differently.”  Despite your diligent efforts of trying to be cool with the demands of work, family life or personal matters, there will always come a time when stress will take over you. This is the primary reason why it is essential to learn some techniques on how to beat stress. The first step that you must do is to accept the fact that stress is part of life. Once you learn to accept this fact, the solution will follow. “Some people are more prone to stress reactions. They’re likely to be people who have difficulty managing on a day-to-day basis. They may not have effective problem-solving skills, or be predisposed to high levels of anxiety and uncertainty,” says Len Tuzman, an expert on stress management.  Continue reading

Top Benefits Of Relationship Counseling

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“A committed marriage is a lifelong partnership that links two people around their most fundamental wishes and wants so that the two people involved can flourish as individuals and as a couple,” according to Catherine Aponte Psy.D.

The truth is that there is no perfect relationship in this world. Every relationship has its ups and downs. This is the primary reason why every couple needs to be strong for each other. When they fail to do this, there is a high possibility that the relationship could not survive the turmoil. The challenges in every union play an essential role in strengthening the bond between the two persons involved.

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I’m A Mom – I Eat Stress For Breakfast All The Way To Midnight Snacks

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“Stress is somewhat difficult to describe accurately beyond simply saying that you know it when you feel it.” according to Roxanna Miller, LMHC.

Talk to me about stress. I’m a mom. I know everything about the word “stress.” I’m sure not all moms are as stressed as me, though. Some mommies only have one child to take care of with two or three nannies to help them. Most of the time, some couples only have two kids, that’s because they don’t have the time to take care of their babies 24 hours a day. I mean, who has the time?

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Overcoming Gambling Addiction

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Risking your money and properties with a relatively small probability of winning is a harmless pleasure, probably for some people. Little do these gamblers know that the only consequences of staking a large sum are either losing a bunch or developing a compulsive behavior known as gambling addiction. “Genetics play a role but growing evidence shows gambling disorder is also tied to the dopamine reward system in the brain. Different gamblers have different experiences but one of the things you see in process addictions like gambling is that much of the reward comes not from winning but from the possibility of winning,” according to Dr. David Sack, a psychiatrist.

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The Connection Between Sexual Addiction And Mental Health

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“Someone with sex addiction isn’t just someone who loves sex. The main symptoms of sex addiction include a loss of control, failed attempts to stop unwanted sexual behavior, and a pattern of negative consequences from anxiety to depression and legal problems,” says therapist Dr. Joe Kort.

Sexual addiction and mental illnesses are both problems experienced by some people. First, sexual addiction contributes to the growth of mental health conditions, and second, mental illnesses take part in sexual addiction cases. Yet upon further studies, research information gathering, and clinical practices, it is likely proved that these two do not share the same connection.

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Is Depression Affecting Your Relationship?

If you are having some troubles in your relationship, depression may be one of the many reasons why problems keep on coming your way. Uncontrollable sadness, anger, or hopelessness may be signs of a mental health issue that can improve with treatment,” according to David Sack, M.D. This is especially true when one has depression.

According to experts, people who are diagnosed with clinical depression are more likely to withdraw from their relationships with other individuals. Most of the time, these depressed persons are not aware that they are already driving their partners away. Therefore, it is proper to conclude that depression can affect the way you connect with those surrounding you.


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