We are living through a global pandemic! Yes, we are living through a crisis so large, our children’s children will know about it. Life is not normal, nothing is normal at the moment. Life is hard, we are missing out on so much, it's ok to not be OK.
One thing we can do though is make time for ourself, to be kind to ourselves and to find time to look after ourself. Self care is so important and you can’t help others if you don’t look after yourself first.
What can I do to look after myself?
Stay connected to others: call people, message people, video call your friends and family.
Talk about your feelings: You have to let your feelings out, do not bottle them up. If you are having a crap day, you are worrying or just feeling sad; talk to someone.
Look after your body: Make sure you are eating healthily, drinking enough water and exercising regularly. Find something that you enjoy, a long walk, bike ride or even Pilates on you tube.
Limit social media and news: In a world where we can’t meet up, connecting with people on social media can help but spending too long on it can have an adverse effect, likewise watching or reading the news constantly can affect your mood too.
Sleep: Sleep is so important to your body and mind. Aim for 6-8 hours of sleep a day and try to limit screen time, caffeine and alcohol before bed as these can disturb your sleep. You can download Sleepio, a clinically-evidenced sleep improvement programme that is fully automated and highly personalised, using cognitive behavioural techniques to help improve poor sleep.
Get outside: connecting with nature can help keep you grounded. Exposure to natural light helps improves your circadian rhythms and sleep patterns and from March to October helps your body produce vitamin D.
When to get help
It’s ok to be not ok but sometimes you do need to get help from your GP.
You should book an appointment to see your GP if:
- You’re struggling to cope with a low mood
- You have had a low mood for 2 weeks or more
- You are feeling depressed or hopeless and your own self help techniques aren’t helping
- If you feel that you need help