How to Avoid Depression (& Stay Happy) in the Time of Covid




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We’ve all been hit with coronavirus anxiety. How do you take care of your mental health during Covid-19?

Here are 5 things you can do to stay happy in the middle of the pandemic:

  1. Choose not to participate. Abide by Covid safety protocols but decide not to be a victim of fear and paranoia.
  2. Eliminate negativity. Inform yourself about what’s important, but select the kind of news you’re taking in. Insulate yourself from negative people.
  3. Hang out with positive people. Have physically-distanced, mini get-togethers with 2 or 3 friends. If you can’t hang out physically, do it on Zoom.
  4. Focus. Focus on your dreams. Think about what you can do to achieve your goals. Keep moving forward.
  5. Have a powerful morning ritual. This is what lights the fire for the day and keeps you going.
    • Exercise. Break up a sweat for 20 mins. It releases good hormones and energy.
    • Journaling. Write down 5 things you’re grateful for. Write how you’re feeling, good or bad. At the end of the day, write down your wins for the day.
    • Meditation. Take some time to calm your mind. Use a mobile app to guide you.
    • Daily declarations. Declare to the world the realities that you want to create in your life.

Full Transcript

Hey there, this is Kevin Ward, the founder of YesMasters Real Estate Success Training, and this is not a video that I ever thought I would be shooting. I’m going to be talking in this video about how to avoid depression, and how to stay happy in the time of COVID.

Now, as I’m recording this we’re in September, we are six months into this coronavirus thing, and frankly a lot of us were hoping that by now it would be in our rear view mirror, not that it was going to be totally gone, I think all of us knew that, but that we were going to be kind of over the hump. We don’t know yet, it’s still persisting. Now we’re entering the cold and flu season coming up, and winter and when things like this, when viruses tend to spread more rapidly, and tend to become a bigger problem. It has rocked our world. It has rocked your world.

The reason I’m addressing it, even though I train real estate agents how to make more money and have a life, I’m doing it because I’m seeing more and more real estate agents who are struggling themselves with the emotional impact that the coronavirus, the pandemic, and all the repercussions of that, are having on people. Because with this one thing that happened, this one pandemic, it created this tsunami, this avalanche, just this chain reaction of things that happen.


The Tsunami of Stress

There’s this multitude of stressors that are happening in all of our lives, right? There’s this multitude of stressors that are happening, there’s financial pressures, there’s the social restrictions of not being able to hang out with your friends, or not being able to go see people, of every time you go out to the store or restaurant, even if you can go out, you got to wear a mask and social distancing and all that. It’s not normal, it’s not right, everything about it feels wrong, and it feels like we’re in trouble, and so just that alone puts a huge burden on people emotionally.

We get cabin fever because we’re stuck in our house, and now we’ve got the loss of personal privacy because everybody’s stuck in the house with us, and our spouse is in the house all the time with us, our kids are around all the time. The people that we are around, we’re around all the time, and the people that we used to get to see at work and socially and all that, we don’t get to see. There’s the uncertainty of what’s going to happen next with coronavirus, with the economy, with politics, with the election, social tensions, just chaos in so many different areas. All of that has an impact on us. You can deny it, but it doesn’t serve you. It affects every human being that is engaged in normal life.

The hardest toll that it takes on us is not financial. Now for some of you watching this, your finances may have been demolished by this, for others your income’s actually gone up, your business has done great, your real estate, a lot of our real estate agents they’re actually making more money in all this. 


The Emotional Price We Have to Pay

But all of that aside, whether your money situation has gotten better, or worse, or stayed the same, the emotional toll is probably the greatest of all. There’s maybe a fear of getting sick and all of that, but the physical toll is not the problem, the financial toll is not the problem, it is the emotional toll of all those things combined.

The natural response that a lot of people have is they’re going like, “I’m feeling depressed. I’m feeling sad. I’m feeling anxious. How do I stop feeling this way?” In America, unfortunately, so many people have been trained, have been conditioned, that when you feel pain, the fastest and simplest solution is to sedate, to numb yourself, and to numb yourself with a pill. I’ve seen it, I’ve seen these conversations on social media about, I’m thinking about going to the doctor, can anybody recommend a good antidepressant, and all this kind of stuff. I’m just like, it’s crazy. This is the kind of stuff that’s happening. I’m looking at what happened when the pandemic hit, in the first 30 days when the pandemic, when everything started shutting down, prescriptions for anti-anxiety medications during that first 30 days rose 34.1%, in one month.

Now here’s the thing my friends, this is not a new problem. I was looking because I’m like, how much is antidepressant, has it really gone crazy, are a lot of people? The answer is yes, the number of Americans on antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications has shot through the roof. In other words, the solution for a lot of people is just to numb themselves, to try to numb the pain, to sedate themselves. 

I’m going to challenge you in this video, stop sedating and start taking control of your life. Stop sedating, stop trying to kill the pain and address the pain, attack the pain, attack the source of the problem and take control of your emotions. I’m going to give you five ways to do that in this video. I just want to share with you that this is not a new problem in terms of the idea of sedating.

Now, this was sent from an article from the Harvard Health Review in 2011, in 2011, and this is what the report they came out with. They did two studies and they found that between 1988 and 1994, there was a 400% increase in the use of antidepressants across America. Then from 2005 to 2008, another 400% increase. Now, during these other periods of times there was still an increase, but in those periods of time, for whatever reason it was dramatic. I’m like 2005 to 2008, a 400% increase, those weren’t even the bad years. 2008 to 2010 was the bad years, during the global financial crisis. 

What happened to you in those times? I don’t know, for some reason the report doesn’t cover that, probably because it was done in 2011. And it was written in 2011 and they didn’t have the numbers. But that my friends tells you that Americans have this pattern of when I’m not happy, I sedate. I am going to tell you that your problem is not physical, so don’t numb yourself.

Here are five things you can do instead of sedating yourself. Number one, I’m talking about how to avoid depression and stay happy, stay joyful in the time of COVID. 


Five Ways to Stay Happy During Covid

1. Choose Not to Participate in the Pandemic

Choose not to participate. Now, when I say that, I don’t mean choose not to abide by laws, I’m not saying that. I mean are there some extremes and some overreach by the government in all this, in my opinion absolutely yes, but that’s not what I’m talking about. What I’m saying is emotionally go like, I am not going to become a victim of fear and paranoia. I’m just not going to do it.

What happened was when this all happened and my real estate coaching members, my real estate agents, what I discovered is there were a number of agents that just go like, you know what, I’m not participating in this. I’m going to continue to talk to people, I’m going to continue to do real estate, and I am going to pretend like this coronavirus thing does not even exist. 

Again, I’m not talking about throwing caution to the wind healthwise and all that. They were washing their hands and protecting themselves and all that. But I’m talking about just emotionally, they go like, I am not going to focus and obsess over the pandemic. Number one, you just simply make an emotional choice, you know what, I’m not going to let this get me down. I’m not. I’m not going to let it get me down, period. Now that decision gives you a lot of power. Does that by itself fix it? Nope. That’s why I’m giving you four other things.

2. Eliminate Negativity

Now what does that mean? That means all the things that are taking you down, it’s the stuff you’re hearing, it’s the stuff you’re seeing, so stop taking that stuff in. Some of you need to take a complete 100% media fast, stop watching the news, stop watching all the gloom and doom, you need to stop talking to certain people and stop listening to certain people. If you can’t eliminate it, at least insulate yourself from those relationships, from those conversations, and when people go, can you believe what’s happened? Oh my gosh, and they go negative, negative, negative.

I’ve done this, I’ve got where I see something and I’m like, oh my gosh, can you believe that, and I start telling my wife, I go hey Julie, can you believe? She goes stop talking about that. Why are you telling me that? I don’t want to hear that stuff. She’s not trying to be blind to what’s happening, she’s just like I don’t need the negativity. Things she needs to know, okay, good. Just start hearing stories of the bad, and the bad, and the bad, our mind focuses on that and it goes down. Number two, eliminate negativity.

3. Take the Opposite Approach

Hang out with positive people. Now there’s two parts to this, one, the positive part, and two, hang out with people. And yes, you can do that. Even though you can’t hang out physically, we’ve had things where we do social distancing. 

We’ve got some great neighbors that we love, they’re great friends of ours. We have backyard social distancing hanging out, where they stay on one side of the backyard and we stay on the other side, and we come in, our dogs hang out and we stay on our side, we bring our own food and beverage, they have theirs. But we can hang out, we visit.

You can do it on Zoom. We had a Zoom happy hour with some friends of ours the other night, and we just got to hang out, we were going to do it for 60 minutes, we were going to have a happy hour, a Zoom happy hour, and we were on for nearly two hours. It was just like we were having so much fun and just talking, and it just gives you that sense of, in the moment it reinvigorates you, it renews that social connection, you can renew that, you can keep that going. You have to keep that going.

4. Focus.

Focus on your dreams, focus on your goals, focus on what you want, focus on bigger goals than you’ve ever had before. Look at this and go man, there’s going to be some great opportunities on this. What can I accomplish? Where can I go next? You start focusing on your goals rather than focusing on the current pile of crap that we’re wading through. Okay. 

One thing for sure. If you ever look down and you’re standing knee deep in a pile of crap, don’t just stand there, keep moving, keep moving, and focus on going forward. Just standing in there, there’s no happiness standing in a pile of crap. That’s what’s happening in our world is you’re. If you’re looking around you and you’re like, this is crap, this sucks, I hate this. Then keep moving. How do you keep moving? By focusing on what you want, focusing on where you go, and every single day you should be doing that.

I’m going to give you the fifth key here, is a way that you can stay focused on that, and that is key number five to staying happy in the pandemic and avoiding depression is 


5. Have a Powerful Morning Ritual

Your morning ritual is what lights the fire for the day, gets you started off on the right track, it gets you going, and it keeps you going if you do the right things in the morning.

Here are just some things that I recommend that you do every morning that I do that will get you going. 

Number one is exercise. If it’s only 20 minutes of hard exercise, get yourself breathing hard and break a sweat. You can walk real fast around your block, you can jog in place, you can do calisthenics. I don’t care what you do, just move, and sweat, and breathe hard. Do some jumping jacks, do some burpees, some jump rope, do something that gets your heart racing, that gets you breathing hard, that gets you sweating because all of that does some amazing things to your hormones. 

It does things for creating endorphins, getting your blood pumping, your heart rate up, all of that insanely powerful. One is exercise, it’s just something rejuvenating about getting your body in motion, and a good intense workout will do that five or six days a week. I’m not talking about over-training, I’m just talking about keeping your body moving.

Number two is journaling. Write down, and journaling you got to have room for the good, the bad, and the ugly, okay. Journaling. I start with the good, five or more things every day that I’m grateful for. Just write down some of the good things that are happening in your life. Focus on that, and you’re going to get more of it. Then I have a thing, I call that my grats, my five gratitude’s. Then I have my guts, and my guts are where I can actually just write how I’m feeling and it can happen at any time of the day, it’s like I’m feeling horrible. I just spill my guts on a page on, and process it. 

If you’re feeling anxiety write that down, write down how you’re feeling, and just writing it down allows you to detach yourself from that emotion and get it out on paper, and you go like I feel better. I just kind of shared it with myself. I got it out there, I feel better already. Journaling is incredibly important.

The last thing I journal is I journal my wins for the day. The things that I accomplished that day, and it’s just insanely powerful, because again, I start focusing on the good, of things I’m grateful for, guts, if I have some bad stuff I need to get out, I’m able to get it out. Then I end the day with my wins. Again I’m focusing on the good things that happened today, on the things that I accomplished today, no matter how small they are, a win is still a win if you celebrate it, and your subconscious mind takes that win and says, oh I like that, I want more of those.

Next is meditation. That’s just taking some time everyday just to calm your mind. I love guided meditations, you can find them on YouTube, you can download mobile apps, about a gazillion that are out there and just find one that you resonate with, and you can do it seven minutes a day, you can do it three minutes and just calming your mind, clearing everything out, it’s just a good thing to do.

Then the last thing that’s really, really critical is your daily declarations. That is declaring, and a lot of people call them affirmations, I prefer declarations, because a declaration implies more passion behind it. An affirmation is you’re just affirming, you’re just saying something right. Declaration, it means I’m saying it baby. I’m letting it out with passion. I’m declaring the realities that I want to create in my life.

Now here’s why this is so, so important. I’m going to end this video with this. There was a training, an audio training back in the 1950s by a guy named Earl Nightingale called The Strangest Secret. In fact, I have a transcript here called The Strangest Secret. I’m going to put a link in this video, I’m going to put a link to the audio of The Strangest Secret so you can listen to this. The Strangest Secret has this, it’s about a 30 minute audio, and the book is just a very simple read, you can get this on Amazon, I’ll put a link for this in the description below as well of the book and also the audio.

But here’s the thing about it. It is so clarifying, and the bottom line of The Strangest Secret is you become what you think about, you become what you think about. Here my friend is the bottom line, if you think depressing thoughts, you’re going to feel depressed. If you think happy thoughts, joyful thoughts, positive thoughts, powerful thoughts, you’re going to become happy, you’re going to become joyful, you’re going to become powerful. I know it sounds crazy, but it is a proven scientific fact.

We know, from all the way to the neurosciences that the synapses in your brain fire differently when you think powerful, empowering, positive thoughts versus when you think depressing thoughts like, oh this is horrible, I know this is going to go bad, this is going to drag on, we’re probably going to go broke, we’re probably going to lose our house. When you focus on that you are going to create that reality in your world.

Do not, my friend, underestimate the power that you have to change your world, to change your life by the things that you think about. When I say, number one, choose not to participate, is simply saying I choose not to focus on the bad, I choose to focus on the good. I’m not talking about living in denial, you still deal with what you got to deal with, but I’m going to deal with the problems, and then I’m going to go back to focusing on what I want. Deal with what I don’t want, focus on what I do want. Deal with what I don’t want, but I’m going to focus on what I do want, and I’m going to take actions toward what I do want, and then when something comes along I gotta deal with that’s negative, I deal with it. I get it beyond me, fix it, and then I go back to focusing on positive.

My friends it will change your life, it will change your emotions, it will fill you with joy, happiness, anticipation, and hope, rather than all the other stuff you don’t want. My friend don’t sedate, take control of your life, take control of your mind, take control of your thoughts, take control of your emotions, take control of your actions. Change your future.

If the video has been helpful for you make sure you give it a thumbs up, comment down below I’d like to hear your thoughts, I’d like to hear what you’re doing to stay happy and to avoid being depressed during the pandemic. Thanks for watching. Check out the links below, and I’ll see you in the next video.


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