There’s no denying that this lockdown has been tough and, as private family doctors, we understand that it has affected people of all ages. It’s so important to take care of your mental health as well as your physical health during this time and remember to be kind to ourselves.
It’s common to feel anxious, bored, lonely, unsure, frustrated or worried, and this is okay – there is no ‘right way’ to live through a global pandemic! For most, these uneasy emotions pass over time, but we thought we would share our advice on how you can help improve mental wellbeing at home.
As private family doctors, we encourage you to reach out for further support if you feel like you need it, whether that be speaking to a friend or family member, or getting in touch with your GP. If you’d like to speak to one of our private doctors, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on 0333 050 7338. Find out more about membership here.
1. Set a routine
For many, the loss of routine during lockdown has been particularly difficult. However, by setting simple tasks throughout the day, we can help ourselves feel more productive and structured. From making the bed to walking the dog, eating breakfast to going for a walk, these tasks don’t have to be difficult, but it’s all part of regaining a sense of control during these uncertain times.
2. Move your body
Exercise can ease anxiety levels and getting outdoors in the fresh air can help boost our immune systems. Taking a simple walk is all it takes to release those endorphins!
You could also partake in some at-home workouts and there are lots of instructional videos to follow online.
3. Stay in touch
It can sometimes feel difficult, but keeping in touch with your friends and family is really important. Whether it’s a phone call, text, or video call, there are lots of ways to keep the connection.
Always seek medical help if you need further support; our private doctors have urgent, flexible and out-of-hours appointments, and we also offer home visits. Find out more about becoming a member here.
4. Spend time away from your screen
Although it’s good to be in the loop with what’s going on, make sure to take time away from news sources, social media sites and television screens every once in a while. Constant news updates can often feel overwhelming, especially when we have little control over them. You could turn off news app notifications, set dedicated time away from your phone, and swap the TV for your favourite podcast in the evenings.
The Forest app helps you stay off your phone screen and focus on life around you. In the app, you plant a virtual tree, which will grow as you stay off your phone – eventually, you could grow a whole virtual forest!
5. Make time for yourself
Whether you’re working from home, home-schooling the kids, or have a never-ending to-do list, it’s often easy to forget to make time for yourself. Dedicating as little as 10 minutes of the day, first thing in the morning or last thing at night, can make a big difference. The Headspace app has guided meditations and mindfulness techniques, which can really help you focus on the present.
As well as this, what we eat has a big impact on how we feel so to ensure you’re eating a healthy, balanced diet, set aside some time to plan out your meals for the week ahead.
6. Get a good night’s sleep
As private family doctors, we know that getting a full night’s sleep isn’t always easy. Here are a few simple ways you can help yourself ‘switch off’:
- Stay away from screens at least an hour before bedtime
- Have a warm bath
- Read a book instead of scrolling through social media
- Listen to a podcast or audiobook – the Calm app has some brilliant materials to listen to before you sleep, from nature sounds to relaxing music, sleep meditations to bedtime stories.
Here at Linbury Doctors, our team of private GPs are experienced in general practise as well as mental health. If you’d like to find out more about becoming a member, get in touch with us on 0333 050 7338.