It’s not just our physical health that is being affected by the coronavirus pandemic – uncertainty, frustration, anxiety and stress, along with the huge changes in the way we now live our lives, are all having an impact on our mental health too, says Tina Turpin.
You’re not alone if these changes are making you feel worried and unsure. Our situation is challenging and unpredictable, and these feelings are quite normal.
As many of us are now adapting our working lives by working from home, following the introduction of social distancing and self-isolation, here are a few suggestions to help you cope mentally and physically over the coming weeks:
- Stay in your previous routine
Keep your alarm set to its usual time, be strongminded (you can do it!) get up, shower and breakfast as if you are commuting to work.
- Take a short local walk
Although you now won’t need to commute, a short local walk will help to keep you in your routine – and with the added benefit of fresh air and exercise to add structure to your day.
- Talk to your colleagues
Emails, messages and texts are fine, but nothing beats actually talking with your colleagues via phone, video conferencing, WhatsApp, Skype etc, to help maintain the connection in the workplace. Helps build a positive attitude as well!
- Breaks are important!
Stop for a morning break, lunch and afternoon break. This ‘down’ time is essential for a good work/life balance. Treat yourself to a different lunch – something you can prepare easily in your own home. Eat lunch away from the computer – sit outside if you can and take at least half an hour – maybe read or listen to your favourite online place.
- Make a ritual end to your working day
Decide when you want to end your working day – and keep to it. Clear and tidy your desk and if possible, turn off your work computer. If you have a garden, go outside – fresh air and a change of scenery will help you unwind. If that’s not possible, take an online exercise class. You’ll find many free exercise classes are now available online.
- Ending the day
Keep to your normal bedtime. Sleep is important to keep you healthy and positive. If you feel stressed before you go to bed (and this can affect the quality of your sleep), try an online relaxation class or maybe some restful yoga.
I am a local Counsellor and if you feel you would like to talk to me, we can meet via Skype or WhatsApp. This link to my website will give you my contact details: https://www.tinaturpin.co.uk/ or give me a call, Tina on 07803 084224.