Spurs: DeRozan hosts helpful conversation on mental health while isolated
By Ethan Farina
San Antonio Spurs star wing, DeMar DeRozan, hosted a conversation with Dr. Kensa Gunter focused on tips on handling life while isolated.
The spread of coronavirus worldwide has forced millions indoors for the foreseeable future. A wild break from the norm, this temporary self-isolation has brought with it a new set of unique challenges. San Antonio Spurs star DeMar DeRozan recently led a conversation on the NBA’s Instagram account about how to confront these new obstacles.
DeRozan spoke with Dr. Kensa Gunter, a clinical sports psychologist, about how everyone can help make these next few months more bearable. The conversation was wide-ranging, applicable to everyone, and offered a few great suggestions that you can incorporate into your everyday routine.
One of the most important takeaways from the conversation was how we should all be mindful of how we are letting technology and social media impact our mental health during all of this. As Dr. Gunter said, it’s important to focus on how you can use our ability to access information to benefit your mental health during this time and be careful not to overload yourself with information.
a licensed clinical sport psychologist on handling life at home during the quarantine! #NBATogetherLive
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There are daily briefings from the White House on the federal governments’ response to the crisis, as well as frequent news updates from state and local officials on how they are handling the response on their respective levels. But it’s important that we all walk the line between staying informed, and overloading yourself with information.
Instead, use technology to check in on loved ones, learn a new skill, or find a creative outlet. I’m not a big FaceTime user, but I’ve used that feature for online happy hours or to check in on friends more in these past few weeks than I ever have before. With a focus on social distancing, it’s important to remember that we can still check in on one another and support each other throughout all of this.
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This can also be an opportunity to reassess daily routines, work on projects you may have been putting off, or develop a new appreciation for the outdoors.
We’ve seen other San Antonio Spurs players like Patty Mills pick up an instrument while in self-isolation. There are thousands of instructional videos on sites like YouTube that you can watch and learn a new skill, whether it be playing an instrument, painting, cooking, or building your own website.
DeRozan and Dr. Gunter also emphasized the importance of getting outside and remaining active throughout all of this. This doesn’t have to be putting yourself through a grueling home workout or building a yoga studio in your garage. It can be as simple as going outside to throw a football, going for a walk around your neighborhood, or riding your bike. Anything to get your heart rate up and take in some fresh air will do wonders for your physical and mental wellness.
Finally, the two reminded us all to focus on what you do have. Maintaining perspective is crucial. Give thanks every day for the little things that you do have, find ways to help in your community, and support your people during this time. This is an incredibly challenging time but we can get through it together.
It’s easy to get caught up in all of the negativity that this has created. But if we are able to maintain perspective, show compassion in supporting one another, and take care of ourselves, maybe we can come out of this worldwide crisis with a greater appreciation for what really matters.