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Mental Health Webinar
by: Kim Santiago
An outbreak of an infectious disease, similar to the current Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, affects us not only physically but also mentally. While it is important to take necessary precautions such as staying informed and practising disinfection and social distancing, we should not neglect the importance of our psychological well-being, or mental health, which includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being.
To this end, an online learning session was arranged by the HRAD last May 8, 2020 with Ms. Mary Margarette Pangilinan, an EMDR Therapy Practitioner – Trauma Focused Therapy, Psychologist at Porta Coeli Center for Psychotrauma Management and Pastoral Counseling, as resource person on the topic: ‘Mental Health during the COVID 19 Pandemic.’ Ms. Pangilinan shared factors that could contribute to mental health problems. These factors include biological factors – genes or brain chemistry, life experiences such as trauma, abuse and crisis, as well as family history of mental health.
She further added that during this time of the pandemic, we should focus on strengthening our physical health while at the same time enhance our mental health. Hence, it is important to become self-aware, that is, understanding our own needs and desires. The more we know about ourselves, the better we will be in adapting to life’s changes. Being mindful of the early signs and symptoms of mental health problems will help us cope better with the factors contributing to our distress and will make us feel in control of our lives.
In order to help us manage our mental health, Ms. Pangilinan shared tips on how to do breathing exercises, meditating in the morning, and having some quiet time 45 minutes before you sleep. She also recommended writing a daily gratitude list wherein you keep a list of things or circumstances that you are thankful for. This is helpful as gratitude is linked to improved well-being and mental health as well as happiness.
The learning session ended with an inspirational video of Nick Vujicic who shared that we must always look within ourselves instead of our surroundings, as our source of happiness.
You may watch the Mental Health webinar below (video courtesy of the Usap Tayo Facebook Page):
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