Managing your mental health and wellbeing
My alarm wakes me as per usual at 6.30am, the sun is streaming through the curtains and I can hear the persistent chirping of the birds outside my window. However, I don’t move, nor jump out of bed, instead just stare at the light hanging from my celling. I don’t have work today as I have been furloughed, so the morning routine feels redundant now. I didn’t really sleep last night, I ate my dinner way too late and I haven’t put on jeans in over 2 weeks, for fear they simply won’t fit.
It’s only been less than 3 weeks of staying home due to the on-going Corona Virus global pandemic, but life has changed dramatically. In the space of less than a month I went from working full-time in an office with colleagues, working from home in isolation and now being placed on furlough for the foreseeable future, not really knowing if I will still have a job to return to.
I look to my phone there are no new messages, but before I can feel sorry for myself I instantly feel guilty, as I know my situation is nothing compared to those who are sick, have lost their loved ones or are feeling the full impact of the financial downturn. In that moment I resolve to make the most of the situation….
- Get-up in the morning and maintain your routine – It’s easy to spend the day in bed, but that’s the quickest way to damaging your mental wellbeing. Where possible stick to your usual wake-up time.
- You are what you wear – Wash your bits, get dressed and out of the pyjama’s, you don’t have to put on jeans and a full face or make-up, but that little bit of effort will have you feeling yourself again, also comb your hair.
- Read a book – Sounds so simple but how many times have you complained about not having time to read.
- Fill the silence – Music, audio books and podcasts
- Set yourself tasks – Make a (short) list of what you want to complete today.
- Stay connected: Facetime, WhatsApp, Skype, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Slack, House Party the list goes on.
- Take a break from the news cycle – It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the information that is currently flooding our senses. I feel my anxiety doubling as I read article after article about the virus. It’s OK to limit your news intake and try to be mindful of the news sources you consume, there is so much misinformation out there.
- Leave the house – Yes we are in lockdown and we are staying home to keep safe, but still take a few minutes to at least walk down the road, just ensure you maintain social distancing and return home safely. If this is not an option exercise at home with the windows open.
- Try something new – There are multitude of free online course now available, not forgetting the endless supply of YouTube content and don’t forget the blogs.
- IT’S OK TO JUST REST!!! – These are unprecedented times, as global community we are facing a financial and health crisis. Therefore it’s completely ok if you don’t do any of the above, don’t feel guilty to actually rest and just concentrate on making it through the day.
Listen to the recent episodes of Colour Out Box Podcast, we talk about social distancing and how to spend your time during lockdown.