Tips for Coping During Coronavirus Lockdown
We all have levels of anxiety at any time and have the ability to cope with this. However, you may find that during this second National lockdown, your anxieties have increased, as well as the sense of being isolation so try the following to help reduce your anxiety, low mood and sense of isolation.
We all like to keep up with the news, but during these uncertain times, limit your news intake to just once a day, and avoid looking at the news just before going to sleep. Make sure you are engaging with a reliable news source, and not one that sensationalises headlines.
Every day try to be outside for at least 15 minutes. There is strong empirical evidence that this improves our mental wellbeing and gives us a sense of ourselves with our own community. It is especially important to optimise the daylight hours during the winter months and so be your most active during the day. This will help your biorhythms and help you sleep at night.
Try to engage with nature by looking at the detail in the natural world. This could be looking at trees, even those with bare branches, and the shapes they make, leaves or flowers. Listen out for noises such as bird song, and be aware of the air on your face. This will help to keep you in the moment and reduce anxieties about the past or future.
Meet up with family and friends, preferably in a green open space. If you are self isolating at home, you can still spend time with others via Zoom or Skype, or join an online club and invite friends to join too.
Pick up with old friends by messaging them. In these times, everyone would appreciate a text or phone call. Or set up an Instagram page and take pleasure from taking photos of things you can find beauty in.
Make sure you are getting enough sleep. Get into good bedtime habits and avoid chargers in the bedroom where you might be tempted to casually scroll through social media, or listen to the news. Instead, listen to podcasts on topics you enjoy, read that book you always were going to, search on the internet for yoga, pilates, mediation or stretching exercises.
Try and work out a routine for your week and keep it realistic and manageable. Make time for activities suggested above such as making contact with friends and family, actively pursue things you enjoy, and ask yourself what helps you to relax.
Reflect back on what helped you during the last national lockdown and employ these coping strategies again.
If you are living with someone where your relationship is strained, try and give yourself some space. Leave your anger, frustration and annoyance for another time, you need to look after yourself right now.
Please do get in touch if you need to talk in a safe, nurturing and non-judgmental environment.