This lockdown seems so much harder. The first one we had the nice weather, so we could sit in the garden and be active outside. Then the second one weather wasn’t great but at least we had Christmas to look forward to. However this one is not so good. and I’m not gonna be mean and list why, because this lockdown is affecting so many people in different ways, but what can we do to help ourselves and our mental health?
Well here are some tips that I have passed on to my clients.
Taking care of your mind as well as your body is really important if you are staying at home because of coronavirus. You may feel worried or anxious about your finances, your health or those close to you. Perhaps you feel bored, frustrated or lonely. It’s important to remember that it’s OK to feel this way and that everyone reacts differently.
Remember, for most of us, these feelings will pass. Staying at home may be difficult, but you’re helping to protect yourself and others by doing it.
There are things you can do now to help you keep on top of your mental wellbeing and cope with how you may feel if you’re staying at home. Make sure you get further support if you feel you need it.
Stay connected with others
Maintaining healthy relationships with people you trust is important for your mental wellbeing. Think about ways to stay in touch with friends and family – by phone, messaging, video calls or social media.
Talk about your worries
It’s normal to feel a bit worried, scared or helpless about the current situation. Remember: it is OK to share your concerns with others you trust – and doing so may help them too. If you cannot speak to someone you know or if doing so has not helped, there are plenty of helplines you can try instead.
Look after your body
Our physical health has a big impact on how we feel. At times like these, it can be easy to fall into unhealthy patterns of behaviour that end up making you feel worse. Try to eat healthy, NO comfort eating,or picking out of boredom. well-balanced meals, drink enough water and exercise regularly. Avoid smoking, drugs or drinking too much alcohol.
If you are staying at home, you could try exercising indoors, as there are lots of free online classes. Or try an easy 10-minute home workout.
Stay on top of difficult feelings
Concern about the coronavirus outbreak and your health is normal. However, some people may experience intense anxiety that can affect their day-to-day life. Help yourself by staying off social media and reading all the nonsense that is being posted. Limit you news intake to perhaps the main evening bulletin. Try to focus on the things you can control, such as how you act, who you speak to and where you get information from.
It’s fine to acknowledge that some things are outside of your control, but if constant thoughts about the situation are making you feel anxious or overwhelmed, try some ideas to help manage your anxiety.
Top tips to cope with anxiety
Understand your anxiety
Try keeping a diary of what you are doing and how you feel at different times to help identify what’s affecting you and what you need to take action on.
Challenge your anxious thoughts
Tackling unhelpful thoughts is one of the best things we can do to feel less anxious. Watch the video to find out more.
Make time for worries
If your worry feels overwhelming and takes over your day, setting specific “worry time” to go through your concerns each day can help you to focus on other things. Watch the video for more advice.
Shift your focus
Some people find relaxation, mindfulness or breathing exercises helpful. They reduce tension and focus our awareness on the present moment.
Face the things you want to avoid
It’s easy to avoid situations, or rely on habits that make us feel safer, but these can keep anxiety going. By slowly building up time in worrying situations, anxious feelings will gradually reduce and you will see these situations are OK.
Get to grips with the problem
When you’re feeling stressed or anxious, it can help to use a problem-solving technique to identify some solutions. This can make the challenges you’re facing feel more manageable.
Carry on doing things you enjoy
If we are feeling worried, anxious, lonely or low, we may stop doing things we usually enjoy. Make an effort to focus on your favourite hobby if it is something you can still do at home. Or start a new hobby: read, write, do crosswords or jigsaws, bake, or try drawing and painting. Whatever it is, find something that works for you.
If you cannot think of anything you like doing, try learning something new at home. There are lots of free tutorials and courses online. You can still stay social at home by joining others online: book clubs, pub quizzes and music concerts are just a few of the things to try.
Take time to relax
This can help with difficult emotions and worries, and improve our wellbeing. Relaxation techniques can also help deal with feelings of anxiety. Make sure you take ME time. Even if it’s just a coffee on your own or a 30 minute time out to read a chapter of a book. just you and some peace.
Get good sleep
Good-quality sleep makes a big difference to how we feel, so it’s important to get enough. Try to maintain your regular sleeping pattern and stick to good sleep practices.
“Don’t be a victim of this lockdown. Be a survivor in fact, focus on you and emerge a stronger, healthier and happier person.”I can help. Message me
Until next time.
Stay safe. Stay healthy.
Hypnotherapy in Suffolk, Essex and Cambridge. and online via Zoom