Coronavirus

If you're finding things hard emotionally right now, you're not alone. We are still here to support you

We quickly adapted to continue supporting people during the current crisis using a mixture of phone and video calls, online groups and more.

Tips for looking after ourselves during the coronavirus crisis

We have been living in very strange times over the last few months. So many of the things we usually take for granted have been restricted. As a result, many people are feeling more anxious than usual and other mental health issues have been made worse.

But even though so much has changed, there are things we can all do to look after ourselves and others. And to improve our mental health.

Connect with others

For lots of us, one of the most difficult things at the moment is not being able to see family and friends. Talking to someone every day, on the phone or maybe even using technology like Facetime or WhatsApp, can help everyone feel less lonely. And if you feel you don’t have anything new to say, why not ask a few questions to get to know them better. People often like to talk about themselves and their memories. Where’s the best place they’ve ever visited? The funniest thing that ever happened to them? Their favourite biscuit?

Take notice

When we’re very busy, or distracted by something that’s making us anxious, it is easy to focus only the negative. But being mindful of our surroundings, noticing the sunset, or a favourite plant can help us appreciate the good and beautiful things in the world.

Be as active as possible

The link between good mental health and physical exercise is well known.

Kevin Betts, of West Sussex-based running club Run Things says: “Exercise causes the release of much needed endorphins - the 'feel good' hormones.” But it’s not just the physical affect that helps. Exercise often gives us a sense of achievement and helps take our minds off our troubles.

We are lucky to live in West Sussex, with the sea and the South Downs offering a range of activities out in the fresh air. Why not try: walking, cycling, swimming or running. And there are lots of free exercise classes on YouTube for when it’s raining.

Keep learning

Exercising our brains by making them learn new things is another fantastic way to look after ourselves. But learning isn’t just about online lessons and courses. You could learn to knit, visit museum or art gallery online, or cook a completely new dish. All these activities help our brains work in different ways.

Give

Doing something nice for someone else without expecting anything in return is a wonderful way to practise self-care. Although it’s hard when you can’t see people face-to-face, you could offer to do someone’s shopping, or spend time looking at ways of volunteering when the lockdown eases further.

But remember this is a difficult time. Be kind to yourself and others, and don’t try to do too much.

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