Keeping on top of your mental health
Our Media Volunteer Stephen gives some tips on how to keep on top of your mental health during lockdown.
Winter was well and truly in amongst us and our continuous doubt about getting some sort of normality back is definitely taking its toll on us all. Slowly but surely, we approach the spring and summer months and as the sun begins to sit high in the sky, we can begin to hope our lives will go back to normal.
Not seeing a loved one, a family member or friends can weigh on anyone’s mind. Our old routines of being with people or surrounded by a good atmosphere are almost a distant memory. It can be really hard and testing at times. People feel down, thoughts spiral, moods swing, and depression sets in. We can lose control of our natural thought process because we don’t have our old habits or routines to guide us. Whether it’s a trip to grans or a night out with mates it was something normal, something we looked forward to and something we loved. Now, it’s a void that needs filling.
We can’t give up hope though. We are helping each other, and we are pulling together to reach out, to battle through, and to comfort loved ones who are far away, but it is also crucial to look after our headspace too. Here’s a couple of things you could try to brighten your day:
Try walking more, not only does exercise help your physical health but it naturally helps your mental health too. Long walks help clear the mind. Make the most of your daily exercise and ask a friend to keep you company while you’re at it. Here is how you can make walking more interesting. Here is how you can thrive in nature during the winter months.
Talking helps. Talk to loved ones can lead to smiles and laughter and with this media age, everyone is literally a video call away. It can help you and the person at the other end of the phone (or screen). Try and meet new people by making friends at online events.
Give a new hobby a go. When the boredom sets in or you’re all ‘teleʼd’ out exercising the mind with new hobbies like art, cooking or even try distracting yourself with online classics like Scrabble, chess or even sudoku keeps the brain ticking.
Read. Pick up a book and get lost for a couple of hours.
Relax. Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to achieve too much. It’s perfectly acceptable to take this time to recuperate and reflect and recharge your batteries.
There’s still a life to be lived we just need to look for it these days. Before we know it, we’ll be back out with our mates, and this will all be a distant memory. For now, just make sure self-care is as important to you as helping the person next to you.