Many people are being asked to stay at home more and this may mean they don’t see anyone for days. People can feel alone and this may make their anxieties seem worse than they should be.
If this is you or you are worried about someone else, think about the following tips to try to feel better:
- Consider how to connect with others. Maintaining relationships with people you trust is important for your wellbeing, try using video calls instead of a standard phone call.
- Help and support others. Think about how you could help those around you – it could make you feel better too. Local ways to volunteer can be found here.
- Talk about your worries. Remember that this is a difficult time for everyone and sharing how you are feeling and the things you are doing to cope with family and friends can help them too. If you don’t feel able to do that, there are people you can speak to via NHS recommended helplines.
- Look after your physical wellbeing. Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals and drink enough water. Try to avoid alcohol and drugs. If you smoke, consider the range of support available to give up please click here for more details.
- If you are able to go outside, consider gardening or walking (keeping the recommended 2 metres from others as outlined in the social distancing guidance). If you are staying at home, you can find free easy 10-minute work outs from Public Health England or other exercise videos to try at home on the NHS Fitness Studio. Follow the hashtag #StayInWorkOut on Twitter or Instagram for great ways to stay active at home. The Activity Alliance has released new ways to adapt activities so more people can stay in and work out. Disabled people and providers can access new social media graphics and tips on the STEP tool.
- Look after your sleep: Try to maintain regular sleeping patterns and keep good sleep hygiene practices – like avoiding screens before bed, cutting back on caffeine and creating a restful environment. The Every Mind Matters sleep page provides practical advice on how to improve your sleep.
- Try to manage difficult feelings: Many people find the news about coronavirus (COVID-19) concerning and some people may experience such intense anxiety that it becomes a problem.
- It is okay to acknowledge some things that are outside of your control but if worrying is stopping you from being happy the Every Mind Matters page on anxiety and NHS mental wellbeing audio guides provide further information on how to manage anxiety.
- Set a limit on your media and information intake: 24-hour news and constant social media updates can make you more worried.
- Get the official facts: Only use a credible source you can trust such as GOV.UK, or the NHS website, and fact check information that you get from newsfeeds, social media or from other people
Try to do things that make you feel positive every day. Here are some things you could try:
Try to stay active every day. We should all try and keep active for 20-30 minutes every day. If that seems daunting why not start with a 10-minute work out.
Being creative often leaves you feeling calmer and happier:
- Try creating something by drawing, knitting, sewing or baking and see if it makes you feel good.
- #CreateToConnect is a hashtag with daily creative challenges to keep people connected, curious and creative at home. Community groups or families can download a free tailored activity pack with all the challenges ahead of time. This will enable you to engage your communities in the challenges - online and offline by printing them out for people who do not have internet.
Enjoy listening and making music:
- Make Music Day on 21st June will be a digital celebration this year taking the form of three key strands: Perform, Watch, Create. They are inviting people to get involved here.
Learning new things is a great way to stay focussed and feel positive:
A new online learning platform to help boost the nation’s skills while people are staying at home has been launched by The Department for Education. The Skills Toolkit is made up of free online courses, tools and resources to help improve digital and numeracy skills.
- The National Archives are now providing free access to their digital records for as long as the site in Kew remains closed to visitors. Registered users can now order and download up to 10 items at a time, up to a maximum of 50 items over a rolling 30-day period.
Here is more information to helping you feel good while life is affected by coronavirus