Looking after your Mental Health: Coping, Accepting & Adapting to Change

In life, whoever we are or however strong we may feel, we are faced with daily challenges that we have to overcome. Strength of mind is paramount to accomplishing many tasks. However now we are faced with this all-consuming pandemic of the Covid 19 virus, our lives have changed dramatically. Looking after your mental health now is more important than ever.

Coping, accepting and adapting to change can be very difficult. However, even more so, for some. Those with mental health issues often find change really quite daunting and extremely hard to adhere to. Mental health spans many different illnesses and is extremely complex. However a common theme is people like familiarity and stability. In these challenging times that can be quite difficult to achieve.

There are ways to help yourself and that’s by trying to stick to a routine. Get up, get dressed and start your day with a little exercise. Yoga and meditation are reported to be great activities for both the mind and body. For example, you might like Annabel and Grace’s ten minute yoga with Maddy video.

 Eating good nutritious, healthy food can help. Foods with high vitamin and mineral contents are beneficial both to our bodies and brain function.

Try and find a hobby that will get you in to a state of “flow”. Flow is a phenomenon whereby time passes, but you haven’t noticed because you are totally engaged in what you’re are doing.

Reconnect with nature, take in your surroundings – the sky, the birdsong, trees and plants.

Try not to let the little things bother you, it’s about getting through this, the best we can. And remember we are all different so each one of us will have different coping mechanisms for getting through the situation. If you do have a wobble, a meltdown, a panic attack – let others know how you feel, talk to them discuss your emotions. It’s by far the best way!

Keep connected with love ones, by Skype, Facetime, phone etc.

And finally enjoy the tranquillity and downtime, if you’re lucky enough to have it. For many of us it may be the first time in our lives that we have had time to sit back and ‘smell the roses’. Cherish it. For others – the amazing NHS and many other keyworkers – they have probably never worked so hard and are putting their lives on the line everyday to look after us… just think of them.

For those that do feel they need extra help, there are many charities and online therapists there to support you through these difficult times:

Childline: 0800 1111
Samaritans: 116 123
Domestic Violence Hotline: 0808 2000 247
The Survivors Trust: 0808 801 0181
Mind: 0300 123 3393
Age UK: 0800 169 6565

Remember this virus is non discriminatory. STAY AT HOME, SOCIAL DISTANCE. We can get through this, and when we do let’s really appreciate and celebrate the lives and loved ones we have.

We’re in this together!

Lesley Greenwood, BSc Psychology (hons), MSc Clinical science can be contacted on 97449 891922 if you feel a phone or Facetime consultation would be helpful to you. If you would like to read more of Lesley’s wellbeing posts, click here.