Mental Health and Problem Management in this situation of COVID-19


Have you ever felt lost? Do your problems take the best of you? Are you trying to find answers to the questions in your mind that don’t let you sleep? Here is something that might help!

Amity University Rajasthan

The subject of Mental health is nearly on everyone's tongue after the outbreak of COVID-19. Does it mean it didn't exist before or were we too ashamed to acknowledge it? Research shows that 1 in 5 children have a diagnosable emotional, behavioral, or mental health disorder. Likewise, 1 in 10 adolescents has a serious mental health issue causing significant distress and impairment in occupational, social, and personal life.

Statistics show that one student per hour commits suicide in India. National Crime Records Bureau's (NCRB) compiled data shows that 28 suicides are reported per day. A few common mental health issues encountered by the students include:

  • Increased stress and anxiety
  • Eating disorders
  • Poor sleep patterns
  • Depression
  • Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)
  • Mood Disorders

Some commonly faced issues in an adolescent's life:


Cyberbullying has significantly grown with digitalization. Merciless criticism for presenting views or even posting a selfie makes me think twice before I post something on social media. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry shows that cyberbullying exacerbates symptoms of depression and PTSD in predisposed adolescents.

Peer pressure

Having a bunch of friends is fun until they start demanding us to behave in ways that make us uncomfortable.

If you are trying to fit in and gain approval, you don't need to push yourself to the edge. True friends will accept you as you are. If you ever feel overwhelmed, it's time to stop judging yourself and start talking about it.


A healthy competition intensifies productivity but an unhealthy competition may immerse you in constant feelings of external shame, stress, and anxiety. If competition makes you feel worthless and inferior, remember one thing, “your marks never define you.” Take a break, give yourself the space to grow. It's life and not a race after all!

Exam pressure

The grade-based success metric instead of output-based has forced children to constantly stress over getting good marks in exams. Exam pressure considerably drains a child. Carrying a lot of stress increases the level of cortisol (stress hormone). It can lead to sleep deprivation, muscle weakness, mood swings, high blood pressure, and the list goes on.

Nothing matters more than your health. Exams are to measure your intelligence and not your worth!

Social media and Unusual body standards

Social media has set different batches of standards in everyone's life. It has made “perfect” look achievable and the real has become undesirable.

Also, with several campaigns going on all over the world, people are trying to generalize the fact that all body shapes and sizes are normal. Yet we keep on comparing ourselves with the models and celebrities, ending up with low self-esteem and low self-confidence.

Mark these words, “You need to have a good life and not a decent social media profile. Social media is to increase connections and not for getting validation!”

Lack of purpose

An empty brain is a devil's workshop. When we lack a purpose in life, we often fall into the trap of hopelessness. No specific aim to follow leads to boredom.

So, the first thing you need to do is discover something that excites you, something that you can chase for years and not get exhausted. Having a purpose keeps a person focused and enables them to take obstacles as opportunities and learnings.

How to tackle those problems?

Breaking Problems into Smaller Pieces

As Aristotle said, “The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.”, breaking down problems into fragments helps in reducing the stress of dealing with the whole problem at once.

Small parts are less scary and easier to tackle.

Asking for Help

It's never wrong to ask for help. One can not exactly know what to do with the problem. An external eye can help in gaining some perspective.

Talking to a friend helps a lot. You don't need to get a solution for every situation. Sometimes, just talking things out might be the most relieving thing.

Letting your heart out will make you feel light and being understood.

Just make sure that you share your feelings and thoughts with a person you trust and can rely on.

Responding Rather Than Reacting

When we react to situations, we work on the effect side of the world. It makes all of our actions depend upon the stimulus ahead.

Taking a deep breath and understanding the problem from a different aspect might help in shooting different reactions to the crisis.


When we carefully observe, we learn many new information and details about the crisis which adds up to understanding it, deciphering it, and then solving it.

Sometimes, observation is a big part of the learning process.

Reframing the Problem

It's not always how it appears. Reframing a problem helps in getting a different viewpoint. Rethinking, brainstorming, and unpacking the assumptions solves the problem differently.

Practicing this technique increases innovation and creativity. Redefinition activates several ways to solve the same problem.

Acceptance & Positive Thinking Process

Sometimes all you can do is accept the fact that things are not in our hands. This is called the law of least resistance because “what we resist, persists.”

Positive thinking prevents the intoxication of the brain. Optimism helps in reducing anxiety.

Looking at the brighter side of things leads to finding answers rather than dwelling on the problems.

Learning & Opportunity

Every event of life is about learning and opportunities. Problems help us grow. Going through hardship increases one's problem-solving skills.

Next time when you face similar types of crises, you can easily come out of it. If it's a friend asking for advice on a similar situation, you have a chance to be a bigger person here.

New opportunities unleash varied problem-solving techniques. Don't forget to grab yours.

Confront / Compromise / Avoid

See what's the best way you can respond to a situation. If things are in your control, the adequate way is to confront the problem.

If your work is at stake because of the crisis, compromise is a reasonable option. You can negotiate on a few terms and can have your business done.

Avoidance is applicable only when things aren't in control at all. It prevents from facing energy-draining events and situations.

Mansi Begal
BA (honors) Applied Psychology
3rd semester