Lately, quarantine and social distancing have become commonplace, as governments all over the world race to fight the coronavirus outbreak. In Malaysia, our government’s Restricted Movement Order (RMO) has called for citizens to stay in their homes for two weeks, and curb all outdoor movement to only the most necessary activities.
While these are important measures to reduce the spread of the virus, changing our lifestyles so drastically, and in such a short period of time, can feel very disorienting for most. Science tells us that socialising helps stimulate our brains to produce dopamine, the chemical associated with pleasure and reward. This is why, whenever we participate in social gatherings, be it in small or large groups, we tend to feel more energised and happy. Sudden isolation, and losing the freedom to go out and meet other people could create many problems, if not mindfully approached.
The good news is, our brains also respond to other forms of stimulation in ways that release dopamine, thus creating a sense of pleasure and satisfaction. The key lies in knowing which kind of stimuli (besides meeting people) makes us personally feel good, and to engage in these activities as much as possible.
To help you with this, SOLS Health will be sharing a series of support-oriented articles related to staying home during the Covid-19 quarantine period. These Stay-At-Home Revival Kits are packed with tips and advice on caring for your mental health, and are grouped around themes such as Reach In, Reach Out, Grow Beyond and Home Care.
Remember, there are many things we can do to help ourselves stay mentally well during this temporary, more solitary lifestyle. We hope these resources will help you cope with how you may feel while being at home, while continuing to look out and care for others.