The government are telling us to stay at home. This will mean a different rhythm of life for most of us and it’s important to care of your mind as well as your body.
You may feel bored, frustrated or lonely. You may also feel low, worried or anxious. All of these responses are normal and it’s OK to feel like this. It’s important to remember that whilst staying at home may be difficult, it is essential in order to protect the NHS and save lives. During this period of time, there are things we can do to maintain and improve our mental wellbeing:
Make every effort to keep in touch with colleagues, friends and family. This could be via email, telephone, video calling (Facetime, Skype, Zoom, Whats App) or social media.
Spend time doing things you enjoy or find relaxing. You could: read; cook; listen to a favourite radio programme, podcast or audio book; watch a film; or start an arts/craft project.
Keep active in the house. Consider putting on some music and dancing around the house, walking or running up and down the stairs, do a free online exercise class (https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/nhs-fitness-studio/) or clean the house.
Keep your brain occupied by doing a jigsaw or puzzle, reading, listening to an audio book or podcast, learning a new language or sign language.
If you find the constant news is making you anxious, consider setting yourself specific times to watch or listen to the news, check social media or news sources. Don’t forget to use reliable news sources, such as https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus or https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/
Use Every Mind Matters (https://www.nhs.uk/oneyou/every-mind-matters/) for simple tips and advice to take better care of your mental health.
Supporting our volunteers
Our community volunteers are a precious resource, and it’s important to follow the national guidance to look after the health of our volunteers and the communities they support. Everyone should be reminded and encouraged to wash their hands for 20 seconds more frequently and to catch coughs and sneezes in tissues. Objects and surfaces which are touched regularly should be cleaned and disinfected regularly, and if you are planning on community support activities it is important to maintain social distancing, remaining at least 2 metres apart at all times. Any volunteers feeling unwell with a new, continuous cough or a high temperature should be sent home and should self-isolate for the recommended time period.
Volunteers over the age of 70 and/or those from high risk groups should also follow self-isolation guidance. They should avoid leaving home and avoid close contact with other people in their home as much as possible. They should ask family, friends and neighbours to support them to do their shopping and use online services where possible. For more information, visit: