Advice & Tips

  • Shauna King

Mental Wellness During Self-Isolation


We know this can be a very difficult time mamas. You may find yourself separated form loved ones, family and friends, unable to go about your normal life. It is a challenging time for everyone, with anxiety on the rise and a current future of uncertainty, now more than ever is it important to check on your mental health and practice mental wellness.


A recent poll commissioned by a YouGov poll, found that 6 out of 10 adults (62%)* have experienced anxiety about coronavirus. Dr. Antonis Kousoulis, the director of research at the Mental Health Foundation commented,

“This poll was carried out before full lockdown was introduced. Even then, there were clear indications that the pandemic was beginning to have a significant impact on the nation’s mental health”.

To help you during this time, we have listed a few services, tips and activities for you to try at home. Remember to practice good mental wellness every day, it is just as important than physical wellness.



Limit the amount of News you watch

Mamas are you like me, wanting to stay up to date with everything that is happening right now?. I know it is very tempting but staying glued to TV news broadcasts will only cause more anxiety and fear**. Limit your exposure to only once a day. Trust us, you do not need to bombard yourself with more than one news broadcast to keep informed.



Free Mental Health App

My Possible Self has announced that people can sign up to their service for free during this time. The company has said they want to help combat public stress during the coronavirus. Founder, Joanne Wilkinson, explained,

“With all of us facing uncertainty about our health, loved ones and work, and increasing social isolation, it is no wonder we are seeing a rise in stress and anxiety. My Possible Self wants to help and are making our app free for anyone who signs up. Based on face-to-face therapy, we will teach you psychological strategies and coping skills to tackle stress and anxiety and boost your mood.”


Physical Activity

I know it can be very hard right now to move from the couch, even the thought of physical exercise is making me feel exhausted. But getting up and above moving is known to improve your mental wellness.

Other benefits of physical exercise include:

  • A better nights sleep – exercising releases pent up energy.

  • Improved mood – physical activity releases feel-good hormones in the brain that make you feel happier.

  • Helps to manage stress, anxiety and a restless mind – being active releases cortisol which helps us manage stress. It also gives your brain something to focus on which can be a positive coping method in difficult times (The little ones are definitely keeping my mind preoccupied right now!).

  • Increased self-esteem – meeting your goals can help you to feel better about yourself.

  • Reduces the risk of depression – studies show that regular physical activity can reduce the probability of experiencing a period of depression.



Stay connected


I know you may be feeling lonely during this time, but remember, there are ways you can still keep connected with loved ones. Why not call a family member, put the kettle on and get chatting.

Skype or video call a friend, play a fun game of Pictionary or try one of the viral challenges circling social media at the moment, such as a dance-off. Even something as simple as exchanging in text communication can help you feel commented and less lonely.


We are also here for you mamas, if you ever want to reach out to us via DM on Instagram, we are always here for you!



Relaxation techniques

Try to focus on what is happening in the now, we know this can be difficult with all that is happening, but if you can achieve this it can lighten any negative feelings you may have, especially those about the future.

There are a few ways to connect with your inner self and relax, meditation, breathing exercises, and yoga are all great ways to center yourself. One of these meditation methods is called Progressive Muscle Relaxation. This is a technique that helps you to recognise when you are starting to tense up and show you how to relax.




Plan your day

Trust me, I know it is very tempting to stay in your PJ’s all day, watch tv or movies and sleep. I'm guilty of living in my pj's right now. But allowing yourself to get into a rut like this can put your mental wellbeing at risk.

Following a regular routine is fundamental to our identity, self-confidence, and purpose.

Starting your day at roughly the same time as you would normally, setting aside time for movement, relaxation, connection, and reflection, and going to bed at the same time every night will get you on track to stick to a routine. You'll definitely feel better for it.



We hope you find these tips helpful during this time mamas. Please remember, this is only temporary. Life will return to normal and we as a nation will get through this, try to stay positive.


If you are struggling with your mental health and are in UK and Ireland, please contact the Samaritans on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org or jo@samaritans.ie.




*YouGov polled 2,126 people over the age of 18 on 17th and 18th March.


**be carefully of fake news, unfortunately there is a lot of that going round right now. For the latest on coronavirus news, head to the NHS website, WHO or gov.co.uk.




References
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/mar/26/six-in-10-people-in-uk-have-felt-anxious-about-coronavirus
https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/coronavirus/staying-at-home
https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/publications/looking-after-your-mental-health-during-coronavirus-outbreak
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=86HUcX8ZtAk



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