• Han Butler

How To Help Your Mental Health During Coronavirus Lock Down


Photo by Magda Ehlers

Hand up if your mental health has been impacted by the Covid-19 isolation...🙋‍♀️ It's not surprising, this is such a crazy time we're in right now. A lot of the things that usually help our mental health has been cut off from us, like going to the gym, seeing family members, going to work, going to support groups etc. Without sounding negative, this could well go on for 3 months, so we can't sit around hoping our mental health will just pick up, we actually have to do what we can to help ourselves.


I'm going to be honest with you, I haven't been dealing with it all very well. When reality hit that I may not see my family or my boyfriend for 3 months, it really pushed me over the edge and I broke my New Years resolution by self harming. Then I spent the next few days beating myself up about it. I don't know about you, but I certainly don't want to be crippled with anxiety and depression for the next 3 months. So I decided to pick myself up and start doing things to help my mental health. I want to share those with you today to hopefully help your mental health during this hard time too.


HOW TO HELP YOUR MENTAL HEALTH DURING CORONAVIRUS LOCK DOWN


Limit your news intake


It's so easy right now to be glued to the news, reading any and every report that comes in about the virus and the people affected, but its damaging your mental health. The only things you NEED to know can be found on the Gov.uk website, everything else reported daily on the news sites isn't essential for you to know.


Limit your social media presence


Granted, you may not have much to do at home right now, but spending your entire day on social media is not going to help your mental health one little bit. I have 3 tips for doing this:


1. Limit your social media time to 3 hours total per day.


2. Don't go on social media for at least 1 hour before bed.


3. As soon as you feel the slightest bit of anxiety or low mood from being on social media, turn it off and do something that makes you happy i.e. yoga, watch Netflix, colour in, play a game etc.


Create a routine


This has been a massive help to me! I know we all have to stay at home but routines keep us sane, well, they keep me sane anyway. My routine isn't strict, I still wake up when I feel like it and snack accordingly throughout the day, but I do make sure to do these things throughout the day;


  • Make myself a cuppa and breakfast (try to make it rich in protein)

  • Do either a 15 minute workout, or yoga.

  • Work through my to-do list

  • Facetime or call friends and family

  • Create to-do list for the next day

  • Take a shower, wash my hair and moisturise

  • Watch Netflix

  • Go to my bedroom, light a candle and meditate before going to sleep. (I blow the candle out before I go to sleep obviously)


My workout and yoga:


My workout isn't anything fancy or hardcore because I've only recently got back into it and I'm SO unfit - I literally get out of breath from walking up the stairs and get a stitch if I stand up too quick. How embarrassing.


So for now, my work out is just; leg lifts (on all fours) 7 each leg, 7 squats, 10 stomach crunches, 5 bridges, and lunges 5 each leg.


My yoga is basically any video I fancy watching that day. But I 100% recommend Yoga with Adriene. Her 20 minute yoga for anxiety video had me feeling calm all day - no lie.


My evening routine:


I'm honestly loving my new nighttime routine! I make sure to watch Netflix after having a shower to basically just unwind and chill. Then when I'm ready to go to bed I choose my meditation video and light my candle.


Guys, it's not just an ordinary candle, it's heaven! I was kindly gifted the SLEEP Lavender Aromatherapy Candle by Manchester Candles, and I'm obsessed with it! If you've never heard of Manchester Candles before, all of the candles and wax melts are made by hand at home which I always think makes a product extra special, and then to top it off, all of the products are vegan and cruelty-free!

The SLEEP candle is a blend of lavender to calm the mind and sooth tired muscles, chamomile to help combat stress and anxiety, cedarwood to help take your focus inwards and help return you to your spiritual path, and finally vanilla to balance the beautiful fragrance.


I honestly can't even describe how calm this candle made me feel before going to bed. I have insomnia, and I really struggle getting to sleep, especially when my anxiety is high or I'm feeling particularly depressed. But this candle (paired with the meditation) cleared my mind and took the weight off my shoulders so that I could drift straight to sleep with a smile on my face.


Do you know what, I love the candle and all of you so much that I'm going to share a little something with you - you can get 15% off when you use the code 'CREATIVEMESS'.


Call and face time your loved ones


The thing I've been struggling with most lately is not being able to see my boyfriend and my Nan. I seen my Nan almost every day, her aura is magic and her hugs are healing, so suddenly not being able to see her has been pretty hard. Being isolated away from our loved ones is something I bet we're all struggling with at the moment, but the greatest thing about the era we're in, is that we can call or facetime them whenever we want to. It's genuinely what will help me through all of this. My Nan and I have been talking via video call on Whatsapp and it's just the best thing.


Call your loved ones, I promise it'll help.


Write your feelings down


One thing I've been trying is writing my feelings down as they happen. So for example, if I get really anxious about something, I'll write down what it is and how it's making me feel. The point of doing this it too get it out of your mind as quickly as it entered. When you have an anxious thought, it gradually accelerates and spirals, you begin to overthink and catastrophise until it becomes a genuine worry that you just can't shake. So by writing it down straight away, you're stopping your one anxious thought from becoming more than it has to be.


Keep yourself distracted


We're going to be isolating for a while, and if you're anything like me then your mental health tends to worsen when you're not doing anything and alone with your own thoughts, so it's important to keep yourself distracted. Find a hobby, watch Netflix, clean the house, do a bit of gardening. Just know when it's time to distract yourself.



Do you have any mental health tips to share?


If you're struggling with your mental health, feel lonely or just want to chat, please don't hesitate to email me or slide into my DM's on Twitter or Instagram. It's a crazy time right now and we all need to stick together (metaphorically, because that'd be a virus hotbed)


Stay home. Stay safe.


Love, Han


xo



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