How to flourish amid new normal and reboot from COVID fatigue? UNC psychiatrist offers tips

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (WTVD) -- Despite restrictions being lifted this past weekend, it's still difficult for some to find a new normal, flourish and move on from the pandemic.

"People are wrestling with where we were, what we've been through and then the big question is, 'Where do I go next,'" said Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody, chair of the department of psychiatry at UNC. "I often think of it as a cell phone battery and now everyone is down on one percent barely."

For that reboot, she suggests a change of scenery--maybe a day trip to Wilmington or the mountains will do some good.

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Dr. Samantha Meltzer-Brody, Chair of UNC's Department of Psychiatry, has tips for how to reboot from COVID-19 fatigue.

"How do you engage in something that will be outside of your own head to really think about what is a fresh start?" Dr. Meltzer-Brody said.
Maybe it's dinner at a physical restaurant or on a patio. Dr. Meltzer-Brody also suggests a random act of kindness.

"How do you reach out to people you've lost connection to, how do you check in with family, friends and neighbors you may have lost connection to?" Dr. Meltzer-Brody said.


If possible, try and spend 30 minutes reflecting on where you've been and what is now most meaningful to you. If you're having trouble answering those questions, then Dr. Meltzer-Brody's recommendation is to look for professional help.

The runs to Harris Teeter in South Durham are going to look the same for a while for Melody Baldwin.

On Monday, she was masked as was her 3-year-old daughter Zara.

"My mental health has been improving just not because of this weekend though," said Baldwin who is an OBGYN at Duke University Hospital. "The more people that get vaccinated--that has helped my mental health."

Dr Baldwin volunteered at a vaccine clinic this past weekend in Durham and had friends over.

"The parents are vaccinated and kids that are old enough have been vaccinated so it felt great for us to feel normal and be interacting in a normal way," Dr. Baldwin said.

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