With such a sudden change to our daily routines and the uncertainty, it’s not surprising that Covid-19 is going to affect our mental health.
Since Covid-19 hit, our worlds have been turned upside down. We’ve been put in a lockdown situation. With social distancing rules being put in place. Leaving a lot of people unable to work or visit their friends and families.
You may experience mood changes, feelings of isolation and anxiety.
Let me share with you some ways on How To Protect Your Mental Health During Covid-19
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Love them or hate them routines are the way forward during this time of uncertainty. Routines give us stability as we know what is going to happen next. Not only that, routines give us motivation and a purpose.
Set Your Alarm
As tempting as it is to have a lie in and stay in bed.
By setting your alarm clock, can help to keep sleep routines regular. Waking up around the same time each day is beneficial for our internal biological clocks. Using an alarm clock can help keep your routines consistent and normalise your sleep patterns.
Give yourself a kick up the backside and set your alarm and get up at the same time each day and start on your daily routines.
Get Washed And Dressed
Just because we are in a lockdown situation doesn’t mean out personal hygiene has to go out of the window. Jump in the shower, wash yourself over with your favourite body wash and you will instantly feel fresher.
Get out of those PJ’s. Yes, I know they’re comfortable, but come on. Grab something that makes you feel good! It might be joggers and a tee or leggings and an oversized sweatshirt. Just get out of your PJ’s. I can guarantee you will feel brighter and motivated.
Crank Up The Tunes And Get Moving
Granted this isn’t everyones cup of tea, but get your body moving! Dance like no one is watching!
Turn on the radio, put on your favourite empowering playlist (if you’ve not got one, create one!) and shake what you’re mama gave you!
Music is one of my favourite ways to uplift my mood.
But a word of warning, don’t crank it up too loud, we don’t want the neighbours complaining!
If exercise is your thing, why not find an online exercise class? I’ve been doing daily yoga to combine movement and mindfulness in one!
Get Some Fresh Air
Yes, I know we are in a lockdown situation and everyones living situation is different. But we can all access fresh air! Swing open those windows. Open those doors (supervised obviously) and let the fresh air into your living space.
Use your ‘hour a day’ to go for a walk with the members of your household. If you have an outdoor space, use it. No matter how big or small your outdoor space is; Get outside and breath in the fresh air and feel that sun and wind on your face. I find it super refreshing!
Plan Your Day
Write yourself a to-do list. (I do love a list) Give yourself 3-4 tasks; or as many as you think that you can manage.
Don’t put too much pressure on yourself.
Your list might include things such as
- Load the washing machine
- Speed Clean
- Go food shopping
Any thing you know needs doing.
By doing this you will be productive, pass the time and feel a sense of accomplishment when you start crossing things off your list that you’ve completed. You might even reward yourself. Do whatever makes you feel good.
Do Those Jobs You’ve Been Putting Off
Ok, so you’ve been putting off certain jobs or activities for a while. I get it. We all do it. But now is the perfect time to do it! Get whatever it is out of the way. I bet it won’t take as long as you thought it would. Or it won’t be as tedious as you thought it would be.
And again, by finally doing it you will feel a sense of accomplishment! That deserves a pat on the back!
Don’t Neglect Yourself
Now is the perfect time to practise self care. Do something just for you. To make you happy!
Take time out to read that book you’ve been meaning to read since you bought it. Give yourself a home made spa day. Pamper yourself.
You are not being selfish by taking time out for yourself! Self care is not selfish! It’s a necessity.
Reach Out And Stay Connected
During these uncertain times of lockdown during Covid-19. You may be feeling isolated. A little out of the loop. Not being able to be with your friends and family. Check in on your loved ones by using technology. Facetime, Skype, Interact on social media.
If that’s a little too technical for you, simply pick up the phone, text or even write a letter and sent it in the post.
If no one has contacted you and you feel alone, don’t think that people don’t care. Be brave and reach out. I can bet my bottom dollar that you will make the other persons day by contacting them. They might be feeling the same.
Know Your Triggers
One thing i’ve leant about mental health and how to help yourself is to identify your triggers. What sets off your anxiety? What makes you go into a dark place? What makes you hide away?
Put a plan into place. How to avoid your triggers and how to cope if you are triggered?
Switch Off The News
If the Corona Virus is causing a negative effect on your mental health, switch off the news. Delete any news apps or turn off notifications. Limit your access to any information that may cause you anxiety.
I’m not going to lie, I love social media. It’s a way to connect with others and to see a snippet of what others are up to. But remember thats all it is. A snippet. A one second snapshot of their day.
Your space on social media is yours! Make it what you want it to be.
If by following certain accounts on social media are triggering your mood or making you feel bad about yourself and having a negative effect on your mental health simply unfollow or turn off notifications for the time being. It doesn’t mean you can refollow them again in the future.
Turn your social media into a positive place for you to hang out. Follow accounts that make you feel good about yourself. Accounts that bring some positivity into your social media space.
I absolutely adore journalling.
You don’t need anything fancy, just a simple notebook and a pen.
Journalling is a great way to express yourself. Write what is on your mind. Get it out of your head and release it on to the pages! Kind of like a brain dump.
Make your journal a positive place by including such things as gratitude lists, your routines, trackers, ideas and inspiration, positive quotes and affirmations.
Get Creative And Find A Hobby
Please your inner child, draw, doodle. Paint a masterpiece. But being creative doesn’t mean getting all arty.
Get in your outdoor space and plant some seeds. Pull out the cookbooks and get busy in the kitchen. Bake some sweet treats or a new meal. Learn to sew, knit or crochet. Take an online course.
All will keep your mind active and keep you busy. You never know you might find your new forte.
Plan For The Future
Right now, you may feel like you are stuck in a rut. But you know what? We know that this will not last forever. Start thinking about the future. Set yourself some goals. Think about where you want to be, what you want to do, how you’re going to do it. Set yourself some goals.
Do you want to save up to go on holiday? Write a bucket list of places you want to go.
Do you want a career change? Write a list of jobs you want to apply for and what you need to do to get you there.
This is the perfect time to sit back, reflect and plan!
Please note that if you are experiencing a mental health crisis during Covid-19 you can contact a number of charities.
Mental Health Helplines
- To talk about anything that is upsetting you, you can contact Samaritans 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You can call 116 123 (free from any phone), email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit some branches in person.
- If you’re experiencing a mental health problem or supporting someone else, you can call SANEline on 0300 304 7000 (4.30pm–10.30pm every day).
- If you’re under 25, you can call The Mix on 0808 808 4994 (Sunday-Friday 2pm–11pm), request support by email using this form on The Mix website or use their crisis text messenger service.
- If you’re under 35 and struggling with suicidal feelings, or concerned about a young person who might be struggling, you can call Papyrus HOPELINEUK on 0800 068 4141 (weekdays 10am-10pm, weekends 2pm-10pm and bank holidays 2pm–10pm), email email@example.com or text 07786 209 697.
- If you identify as male, you can call the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) on 0800 58 58 58 (5pm–midnight every day) or use their webchat service.
- If you’re a student, you can look on the Nightline website to see if your university or college offers a night-time listening service. Nightline phone operators are all students too.
- If you identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender, you can call Switchboard on 0300 330 0630 (10am–10pm every day), email firstname.lastname@example.org or use their webchat service. Phone operators all identify as LGBT+.