How to take control of mental and physical health in troubled times

Ben Henry
Updated: August 30, 2020 10:45 PM
Created: August 30, 2020 02:24 PM

This year has been hard on our mind and body. From a global pandemic, violence and destruction in the Twin Cities, to our everyday stresses, if one does not take care of themselves bad habits and poor health may result.


Allina Health has specialists that can help you through these tough days and become healthy while this year of uncertainty continues.

Sarah Paper is a clinical psychologist with Allina and says step one is take action — no matter how small the step.

“One thing we hear a lot of people saying, and I find myself saying this too, is ‘these are the things I want to do when things get back to normal.’” Paper said.

“[Or], ‘When things get back to normal I’m going to do this’ … I think at this point we maybe should stop thinking about that and using all our energy, our maybe very little energy into those thoughts, and put them into thinking, ‘How can I make right now as normal as possible?’”

Paper says to think of yourself first, starting with a consistent bedtime, a well-balanced diet and exercise when possible. Also, don’t be shy to reach out to those who you know can help motivate you, but also don’t be shy to "be the helper" yourself.

“And then to take breaks,” Paper added. “Taking breaks and getting outside our 5-to-10-mile radius and get into nature and realize we are part of a bigger, beautiful world than what just going on around us.”

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