A couple of weeks ago, we wrote about looking after your mental wellbeing during lockdown. To mark Mental Health Awareness Week (18 - 24 May), we’ve got some more tips to help you cope with the current situation.
After the Prime Minister announced his conditional plan for easing lockdown in the UK, you might be experiencing some new emotions. Perhaps you’re worried about having to return to work or sending your son or daughter to school. Or you might feel quite safe at home and be anxious about going back to ‘normal life’.
1. Be Kind.
Research shows that being kind is good for both the recipient and the person who does the kind deed. The physical and mental health benefits are huge – being kind can lower your blood pressure, release happiness hormones, help you to bond with people, improve your heart health and even slow down the aging process. And it doesn’t always have to be about being kind to others. How about being kind to yourself too?
2. Be active
Doing regular exercise can be really good for your mental health – it gives you something to focus on, improves your self-esteem, helps you to sleep better and makes you feel happier. While the initial lockdown restrictions meant you could only exercise once a day, you’re now allowed to go outside more often with members of your household. Here are some things you could do to stay active (just remember to follow social distancing rules when you’re out and about):
Walking/running – there are lots of beautiful places to walk and run in London, along canals and rivers, through forests and in local parks.
Cycling – how about going on a bike ride with your family or your housemates? Make the most of the cycle paths around London and enjoy the fresh air.
HIIT – even if you’ve only got 30 minutes to spare, a high intensity workout can make a big difference. Do it in your front room or in your garden.
Yoga – go online to find yoga videos and apps that will guide you through the various poses.
3. Be Brave.
The more we know about coronavirus, the more worried we might be about the relaxing of lockdown restrictions. A recent YouGov poll revealed that many people in the UK don’t feel comfortable about returning to restaurants and other public places, for example. But it’s important that we get back to some kind of normality, when it is safe to do so. This might require a leap of faith and some courage. Here are some practical steps you can take to help put your mind at rest:
Continue to follow government advice about social distancing and hand hygiene.
Limit the time you spend on social media – try to go to reputable sources for information about coronavirus.
Talk to your employer about the safety measure they are putting in place at work.
If you normally commute by tube or bus, see if there’s an alternative – could you walk or cycle to work instead?
Be open with your friends and family about how you feel and ask for their support. You’re probably not alone if you have concerns about the future.
Find out how KBPT can help you to stay happy and healthy with remote personal training sessions via Skype or FaceTime