Looking after your Mental Health at home

Looking after your Mental Health at home. This is the question on all our minds.. especially if you are used to getting outside and being in nature for your wellbeing!

Now we have to get creative to get through this.. and we will! We are aware of what we can do physically to stay healthy – wash our hands, stay away from people, drink plenty of water, eat healthy, take some vitamin pills etc. but what about our mental health? Its not so freely talked about is it and with stress levels quite high at the moment, I think we should..

Looking after your Mental Health at home!

Last week I came home to my teenage kids who were already off school.. I was happy to see that their first ‘homeschooling’ task was to design a poster to help people look after their mental health whilst in isolation.

I was super impressed that their teacher had thought to do that and I got permission from them to share it here but I am sure everyone has their own ideas so could try and make their own one, or write a list as a reminder and to help if you start feeling down.

Mental health during isolation
 

It also started me thinking about whether or not this had been discussed before the schools closed or ever gets discussed much at school or work..maybe now it will , which will be a good thing.

In the meantime I thought I would share some of the suggestions and hope that it might start a discussion in the comments if anyone else has any tips or wants to share what they are doing.

These are some ideas (some taken from the poster with permission, others I have yet to try out.)

  • Get up! ( sounds simple – but can often be the hardest thing!) Do your ‘usual’ routine – have a shower, get dressed and eat breakfast, have a cup of tea … whatever you did before – keep doing it.. (probably won’t be in such a hurry if you don’t have taxi waiting or a bus to catch but do it all the same!)
  • Make a plan for the day so you don’t lose track of time… could just be a list to stick on the fridge.
  • Talk! Stay in touch with your friends or family – online, or on the phone – call your relatives or even just shout at the neighbour over the fence or from the doorstep.
  • Write! a diary or a journal, or blog online. Could be a photo or sketch journal maybe.
  • Make! – maybe paint or draw a picture, cook or bake a cake, sew or make a collage with some magazines, do some colouring or take photos – do something that makes you feel happy, or at least distracts you to pass the time.
  • Plant some seeds. Watering them and looking after them will give you a routine and will eventually be worthwhile!
  • Help! Look out for each other – that could be phoning a friend or an elderly relative, or sending them a card, checking in with people if you can help them, or if they need to talk.
  • Move! Get some exercise – if you can get outside, that’s great – go for a walk around the block, go for a run, bike ride. If that’s not an option, go outside and play with a ball, challenge yourself to something new like keepy-uppies or juggling the oranges (if you have some). Just 20 minutes of raising your heart and working up a sweat rate can produce happy hormones to reduce stress and depression – if you are stuck indoors maybe you can find a dance, exercise or yoga class online or on TV to do. If you find a good one, please share in the comments.
  • Take a break from the news and social media. Try to focus on practical things you can do yourself and how you can improve your immediate world around you, even if it’s simply enjoying a cuppa.

Above all, stay in touch and if you are feeling low reach out to someone to speak to them. Don’t be afraid to ask and let people know how they can help.

Good Luck and please share your suggestions, we are all here for each other, now more than ever.

Emma

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