The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is changing how we live our lives. We are entering unchartered waters and not knowing how long this situation will last or how it will develop.
I know that as a result of this uncertainty, people naturally worry and our emotional wellbeing may be affected. Following the government advice to stay at home and maintain social distancing has meant that we are spending more time confined to our houses and time away from our families, friends and colleagues. This can make us feel isolated, stressed, anxious and even sad.
But there are many positive things we can do to stay as physically and mentally well as possible. There is plenty of advice and information at our fingertips and here are a few of my favourites to maintain or boost your mental wellbeing:
- Look after your body – keeping active by taking a stroll or some exercise (following social distance rules) or spending time in your own garden will help boost your immune system and make you feel good.
- Eat well-balanced, regular meals and drink plenty of water.
- This is an opportunity to learn new skills or hobbies – there are many ideas and resources online to learn something new.
- Do some of the household jobs that you have been putting off.
- Connect with people – phone friends and family or arrange a video call, it makes a difference if you can see each other.
- Be kind – acts of kindness increase our own feelings of happiness; communities and societies flourish when people look out for each other.
- Enjoy nature, watching all the animals in the garden or your doorstep or on your balcony if you don’t have a garden.
- Laugh – share a joke or a funny video clip with a friend or family member, please keep this descent and consider how the other person might receive it!
- Listen to music – take a look at the Healthwatch daily playlist for uplifting tunes.
- Learn something new. There are lots of on-line courses offering to support learning, why not consider something from Future Learn here
- Advice is to limit how much time you listen to the news – and only listen to reliable news sources.
There are many more tips available. Here are some further resources for you to access more help and advice:
Action for happiness – active coping calendar: The world is in crisis. Keep Calm, Stay Wise & Be Kind.
Mind.org.uk Coronavirus and your wellbeing
Carers.org.uk Coronavirus – protecting your mental wellbeing
We are fortunate to have so many ways of keeping in touch these days to stay connected. Please make use of these.
And the #clapforourcarers on a Thursday evening at 8pm is bringing us all together, in our gardens, on our doorstep, on balconies. We can join in that community spirit to show our united support for key workers across all sectors and across the country.
Stay at home, Protect our NHS, Save lives