Ten Simple Things
Coronavirus can make us feel anxious, stressed, worried, sad, bored, lonely or frustrated. Everyone feels different and that’s OK. For most of us, these difficult feelings will pass.
There are simple things we can do to help take care of our mental health and wellbeing. Doing so will help us think clearly, help look after ourselves and those we care about.
1. Stay connected with people
Maintaining healthy relationships with people we trust is important for our mental wellbeing.
If you can, visit or meet up with friends – old and new - and family while following the latest government guidance . Or, stay in touch by phone, video calls or social media.
2. Talk about your worries
It's normal to feel worried, scared or helpless about the current situation. It’s OK to share your concerns with others you trust – and doing so may help them too.
If you can’t speak to someone, there are plenty of helplines you can try (see grid).
3. Support and help others
Helping someone else can benefit you as well as them. So try to understand others’ concerns, worries or how they’re behaving.
How could you help those around you? Who could you meet up with, or call or text?
4. Feel prepared
It can help you feel readier and less concerned if you work through what the current government guidelines mean for you: how will you be affected and what do you need to do?
It might help to talk with your employer about support, sick pay and benefits rights.
5. Look after your body
Our physical health has a big impact on how we feel. And it can be easy to fall into unhealthy patterns that end up making you feel worse.
Try to eat healthy, well-balanced meals, drink plenty of water and exercise regularly. Avoid smoking or drugs, and try not to drink too much alcohol.
Going for a walk or run, bike ride or 10-minute workout can help lift your mood and clear your mind.
6. Stick to the facts
You might want to limit the time you spend following news of the pandemic and turning off -news alerts on your phone.
You could set yourself a time to read updates or limit yourself to a couple of checks a day.
7. Stay on top of difficult feelings
Concern about the coronavirus outbreak is normal. However, some people may experience intense anxiety that can affect their daily life.
Try to focus on what you can control, like your behaviour, who you speak to, and where and how often you get information.
8. Do things you enjoy
Focusing on what you love to do, relaxing or connecting with others can help with anxious thoughts and feelings.
Can you do them following social distancing guidelines or you could adapt them, or try something new?
9. Focus on the present
Focusing on the present, rather than worrying about the future, can help with difficult emotions and improve our wellbeing.
Relaxation and mindfulness techniques can help some people deal with feelings of anxiety.
10. Look after your sleep
Good-quality sleep makes a big difference to how we feel mentally and physically.
Try to keep up regular sleeping patterns, avoid caffeine or screens before bed, and create a restful environment.