I don’t know about you, but I feel this:
“In a normal environment, you know what to expect and how to navigate things. You probably have work under control, school schedules are structured, and the regular chaos of life ebbs and flows at a fairly predicable rate. Sometimes you’re stressed, sometimes you’re not, and occasionally you feel mentally fatigued when things are particularly crazy.
But our current state of prolonged instability and change is something different. It’s like noise that’s always playing around us as we try to get through the day-to-day. Our brains naturally try to assign structure and normalcy to our personal environments, but the current noise can be deafening and distracting, and is changing all the time making it all that more difficult to put things in order and operate normally. This means your brain must work even harder to try and be productive and create routines and stability.”
Some of the suggestions are OK, but I also find them to be overly simplistic. Sure, get outside, exercise and find some nice, relaxing activity like reading to occupy your mind, but at least for me, during these times, that’s not nearly enough.
For example, I can spend some time on the exercise bike, but if I also spend that time looking at social media, watching the news, or just thinking about work, does it really help?
Does walking in nature help if the quiet just allows my brain to start thinking about all of the things I need to do when I get home?
Again, in my own personal experience, no. It doesn’t help at all.
What helps, is having activities that actually involved my brain, things that require focus and attention so that the noise doesn’t have anywhere to start, but also things that don’t require SO much brainpower that they add to the fatigue.
Stuff like really interesting documentaries or podcasts. Something that I’m very interested in, that isn’t going to cause me more anxiety. (Historical podcasts, or other educational things are really useful here.)
Or, even playing video games, since I have to pay attention to play the game, instead of thinking about the next hurricane, or the next protest.
But, I also recognize that is what works for me. It’s not what works for everyone. The important thing is not which activity you choose, it’s recognizing that feeling mental fatigue, is pretty normal right now. And we shouldn’t ignore it.