Taking care of your Mental Health during COVID-19
Posted on April 13 2020
Hello Dixi Fam,
Keely's back with another rambling post to hopefully help a couple of you out!
Mental health is something that I’m extremely passionate about discussing, and I think it’s important we continue the conversation throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic. It’s highly likely that a large volume of people are experiencing a new kind of anxiety that they’ve never felt before. For those of us who suffer from anxiety on the daily, we hopefully already have coping skills in place that we can utilise, and it’s important to share our experiences with those who are going through it for possibly the first time.
I also want this to act as a little reminder to anyone who needs to hear this: your problems and your experiences are still important and valid. I’ve found myself feeling guilty for worrying about things that had been going on with me pre-Coronavirus, but the addition of a worldwide pandemic doesn’t erase or negate everything else. This is why it’s so important, now more than ever, that we make an effort to check in with our mental health and carry on practicing self-care as we would normally. Let’s not forget to check with others too; we’re all coping with this differently but it’s something we’re all going through and the best way to get through it is as a team.
I wanted to bring you some tips I’ve picked up on my travels around the internet on how we can make this time a little easier for ourselves. I’ve found a great resource in Kati Morton’s youtube channel so I would definitely check out some of her most recent videos if you find yourself feeling overwhelmed.
Monitor your media consumption - While it’s important to stay up-to-date with the latest Government guidelines and recommendations, it’s equally as important to ensure you’re not overloading your brain with information and bad news.
Stay Connected - We are so fortunate to live in a time where it’s never been easier to stay connected with friends and family. Pick up the phone, arrange a Skype date with some friends, take the opportunity to check in with people who you haven’t spoken to for a while. Strength in numbers!
Create a positivity list - Okay, okay, that might sound a bit cheesy, but I’ve been finding it so helpful to remind myself each and every day of the things I have to be grateful for. Particularly if your mind tends to wander off down a negative path, physically writing yourself a list to reflect back on is a helpful tool when it comes to keeping your mind in a positive place.
Indulge in your hobbies - If you find you have lots of spare time that you’re not used to filling, now is the time to indulge in your hobbies. Struggling to think of one? Find a new one! I’ve been throwing myself back into reading and writing, but also thinking of teaching myself Calligraphy as that’s something I’ve always wanted to do but never found the time for. Come out of the other side of this pandemic with another skill in your pocket.
Make plans - This will all be over, eventually. Although we currently don’t know when and it’s unsure how long the world will be in lockdown for - it is going to end. We’ll soon be free to live our lives and make up for lost time.
Help others - Look after yourself first, but I’ve been finding it very heartwarming and a comfort seeing my little village come together. We have a WhatsApp group and I’m speaking to people I’ve only ever nodded to in passing, and helping to orchestrate a food delivery for the elderly in the village is both acting as a welcome distraction and an act of positivity.
Check in with yourself - Whatever you’re feeling right now is valid and it’s okay. It’s okay to be worried and it’s okay if you’re not feeling 100% yourself. Remember to check in with yourself, be kind to yourself and try practicing some of the above to give yourself a little boost.
I hope you’ve found this helpful. There are so many great resources coming out each and every day, so please know you’re not alone and this won’t last forever.
Lots of love,
Samaritans - 116 123
Mind - 0300 123 3393 (Online chat also available)
Beat - 0808 801 0677 (Online chat also available)
Anxiety UK - 03444 775 774
No Panic - 0844 967 4848
Papyrus - 0800 068 4141