Staying positive during this craziness is a hard task and I’m not going to act like it’s simple. Everyone is different, so everyone has different coping mechanisms and ways to stay positive. What I offer below is just some suggestions that I think could help!
- It’s easy to get caught in an endless cycle of news reports, but it comes to a point where you need to limit yourself. Cut it down to 10 or 15 minutes every day; an allotted time for you to get your updates and see the necessary information, but not enough time for you to become engulfed in a tsunami of depressing facts and figures. (And remember: not every source is reliable.)
- This may seem obvious, but make time to connect with friends. Not being able to socialise and see the people you normally would can definitely have an impact on you. To try and make up for this try facetime, houseparty, zoom or anyway you wish to contact someone! Even if you are someone who prefers texting, I think now more than ever I would encourage you to ring someone to hear their voice. Even reach out and contact old friends you may not have seen in a while; everyone is going through the same thing and everyone is in need of social interaction. Whether that’s because they’re isolating alone, or simply because they need interaction from people that they aren’t isolating with.
- If you’re lucky enough to have a garden, use it. Feel fortunate that this self isolation is happening in Spring and not a miserable winter! Utilise outside space, and if you don’t have a garden – and you are able to – try and make sure you go for a walk at least once every other day, even if it is just up and down your street. Go for it! In general I think sunlight is always good. So make sure to open your curtains or blinds to let sunlight in your home because sunlight has been proven to reduce stress and also provide us with vitamin D.
So yes, these are my three main tips! I’m sure there is a lot more advice I could include, but I found these ones to be the most useful. I hope everyone is staying safe and positive.
If you’re struggling, reach out. For some people self-isolation means relaxing with their loved ones, but for others it may not. Check in on those people who are self-isolating alone. For some people the state that our country is in, and self-isolation, will be detrimental to their mental health. For some people, staying at home means being trapped in an abusive household. My point is: reach out.
Here are some key contact details if you’re struggling with any of the issues I mentioned:
Samaritans – for emotional support: call 116 123 (any time night or day) or email firstname.lastname@example.org (24 hour response time) or visit samaritans.org
24/7 Crisis Textline – for crisis support: Text ‘UWE’ to 85258
Relate – for relationship support: visit relate.org.uk
Refuge – for women & children domestic abuse support: call 0808 2000 247 (any time night or day) or visit nationaldahelpline.org.uk
ManKind – for male domestic abuse support: call 01823 334244 (Monday to Friday, 10am to 4pm) or visit mankind.org.uk