If there’s one thing for certain, Coronavirus has impacted all of us in one way or another, and it’s sure been a test of the public’s resilience and perseverance.
Whether it is the lockdown measures, self-isolation, working from home or worrying over the health of friends and family, the pandemic is tough on everybody’s mental health, regardless of how big or small.
Feeling anxious, fearful, lonely or even just bored are all very normal, but it’s about having the right measures in place that allow you to maintain a positive wellbeing and help you navigate through this, or any other, challenging time in your life.
Here are some tips and tools for preserving a positive mental wellbeing:
Stay Connected with Loved Ones
Seeing your loved ones is one of the quickest ways to bring about a feeling of authentic happiness.
Whatever your feelings are at the time, you need somebody to reach out to, and friends and family are usually the best person for this. Plus, they always know how to make you smile and laugh!
While we might not be able to physically meet up with all of them at the minute - especially if they live far away - it’s so important that you stay connected by other means such as phone calls, texting and social media as it can really boost your mood and help to keep a positive mental wellbeing.
If we’re speaking solely on the challenging time that is Covid-19, it’s hard to stay physically connected with all of your loved ones, so staying virtually connected has become the new coffee catchup.
Video calls are the best way to feel the connection between yourself and your friends or family as you can see them while interacting, and you can also have a real-time conversation to talk about how you’re feeling. This is a good way of feeling more in the moment and temporarily lifts the sense of distance.
Some of our favourite technology for catching up with one - or big groups - of people via video are:
- Facebook Video Chat
- WhatsApp Video Call
- House Party
While writing letters wouldn’t typically be your first choice of communication with family and friends, writing a letter can act as a great form of self therapy. Pen to paper has power and it feels almost liberating to scribble down your feelings.
Receiving handwritten letters from a loved one is also a joy. Since it has become unexpected thanks to today’s technology, your friend or relative won’t be able to help but smile when your letter gliders through their letterbox.
Self-Care Sundays Everyday
Self-care Sunday has become a popular phrase on social media - but we believe in self-care everyday… especially during times of difficulty!
This doesn’t mean you have to do the full pamper works everyday, we also don’t mean weekly shopping sprees, self care is simply doing the activities you enjoy for YOU and only you.
For some people this will be allowing themselves 10 minutes in the morning to spend time with a coffee and the newspapers, for some this will be enjoying their favourite TV show with a glass of wine in the evening and for some it could be a 13 mile run before work.
Self care looks different to everybody, but they’re all just as important as each other when looking after your mental health.
Keeping Physically Active
Physical activity is just as important for a positive sense of wellbeing as it is our physical health. Even small bursts of 10 minutes, whether walking, running or swimming, increases our positive mood, energy levels and improves wellbeing.
More regular and longer-term participation in exercise helps to ease our stress and anxiety levels, and can even increase our self-esteem as we begin to see or feel physical changes in our body - such as newly gained strength.
Staying physically active plays a significant part in preventing the development of mental health problems, as well as improving life satisfaction and quality for those who have pre-existing mental health problems.
There are endless benefits for those who exercise regularly.
Try to Keep Structure in Your Day
In the current situation we find ourselves in, it is safe to say that most people’s daily structure is now non-existent, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t create a new normal for ourselves.
Having structure to your day can feel like a sense of purpose to some, and if they find themselves out of routine it can have quite a negative affect on their day to day happiness.
Some ways you can implement a NEW structure to your day includes waking up and going to bed at the same time each day, setting aside a specific time to complete your daily exercise, assigning a time frame to complete your chores and more importantly - setting a daily time for some self care!
Even if you stick to your new daily routine loosely, it can help you to look at life positively and improve your mental health.
Aim for 8 Hours of Interrupted Sleep
Just one night of poor sleep can make the most of us moody and irritable throughout the next day. So having consistently bad sleep or a lack of sleep can have quite a substantial knock on effect on our mental health.
Try to go to bed at the same time every day, and wake up roughly around the same time to help maintain a good body clock and always try to ensure your sleeping time is 8 hours - or thereabouts.
If you can’t sleep but you’re not sure why, following these sleeping tips might help you to drift off into a deep slumber.
Venture into the Great Outdoors
Research has previously shown that spending just 10 minutes a day outside can help to reduce stress levels and boost feelings of happiness.
Government guidelines allow us to do so, so we recommend spending as much time in nature as you can - whether you can spare 15 minutes a day or five hours. Use the time to go for a stroll in your local park, walk down the canal side, wherever you feel happiest outside. This could even be your garden!
Vitamin D also helps to boost your levels of immunity!
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