Pine Tree Counselling
Trudi Jane Wyatt, MA, CT, CCC

Counselling services for individual men and women in Calgary, Alberta.

verified by Psychology Today


Phone: 403.270.2386**
Emergencies 911

350 7 Ave SW, Calgary, T2P3N9

Tips for helping preserve your mental health during social distancing


Bessel Van Der Kolk, MD is well-known for his expertise in helping people who have experienced traumas. He recently* shared some ideas to help reduce the likelihood of mental health impact of this difficult and lonely / socially distant pandemic time. These included (in no particular order):

1. Maintaining a sense of purpose; maintaining your identity. Holding on to these.

2. Maintaining a sense of productivity, such as by creating a schedule, or making plans to look forward to, such as talking to a friend.

3. Maintaining a sense of agency or mobility – activating your body to do things within your capability, whether that’s yoga, cooking etc.

4. Being “mindful” of your self and your body. Make observations, and choose, rather than react. Tell a friend how you have been feeling. These as opposed to “numbing out” or “spacing out” such as by watching endless television.

5. Creating a sense of safety, even in the current context — identify things that help make you feel safe. For some people with a history of feeling unsafe, this might be extra challenging in these times, so if you need assistance with this, please contact myself or another mental health professional and/or see the “Risk” tab above which lists some support resources.

6. Maintaining a sense of time, even focusing on the idea that “this” moment is different from the next, and so on.

7. Maintaining connection – “attunement” with others, such as by phone calls, video calls, etc.

*Source: PESI Inc. webinar

Please note that this post is neither counselling nor counselling therapy. If you need these services, please contact me or another professional. If urgent support is needed, calling Calgary Distress Centre at 403.266.4357 is an option. For emergencies, consider calling 911 or going to your local Emergency Room. This page is for information only, is not advice, and implies neither an intent to provide professional services to readers nor that a professional relationship has been established with readers. Current adult residents of the Canadian province of Alberta are the only intended audience of this post.

Pine Tree Counselling © 2020