This lockdown has been quoted by Dr Elke Van Hoof as ‘the world’s biggest psychological experiment‘. And I completely agree with that quote, it’s been such a test for us all and our current mental health states. For me, personally, my mental health has ben on such a rollercoaster during this time. As I write this today I feel happy and optimistic wheras yesterday it was more of an anxious, on edge sort of day. Hit and miss.
I have been lucky enough to still be able to have chats with my therapist who really does help when things get too much, it’s like having reassurance or a warm hug through the screen. It might not be the same as going to in person sessions but it is the best that can be done for now. I feel like I am adjusting to being in lockdown but I have found more anxiety come as a result of that. But I am still trying to get through it and I want to share with you some of the things that have been helping me!
I stopped reading the news/ deleted apps
As my great therapist says, you can’t always avoid a trigger. Which is very true, but you can also put some measures in place to avoid things that make you inhappy. Tiktok for instance was making me feel constantly triggered as people would make jokes about horrible things me and millions of others had been through, these reminders kept popping up for me and making it harder for me to keep safe during lockdown. So, I deleted the app. On twitter, I have muted so many words that talk about topics I am sick of hearing about, COVID-19 is the obvious one. It might seem like a small step but it’s majorly helpful.
Learnt new things
As of right now I am learning/have learnt, many new things. I decided to learn new things and also expand on my skills in something I already have knowledge about! Drawing is something I have done for such a long time but never really went into the ins and outs of. Now I am doing illustrations as well as portraits, I’m finally able to use shading pencils. One thing to note though is even though we have alot of time to do things, you don’t always have to be productive. But by having goals to learn helps keep my brain from thiking about the bad things.
Connecting with people
When I can actually be bothered and look presentable, I have been making sure to stay in touch with friends and family who I cant see right now. A quick phone call or facetime with everyone struggling to get around one phone is the best way to not feeling so alone.
Bullet journaling is really helpful for me, when I feel really really low, I have a list in there of all the things I love so much about being alive. It gives me the strength to carry on living through any hard times. I can get lost but just taking a pen and doodling in my journal or writing about how frustration things are right now.
Unfortunatley mental health services were strethced before the current situation but now they’re stretched more than ever, because of this here are a few reasources that can help you out if you aren’t able to speak to anyone. If you or anyone you know is really struggling and can’t seem to feel better then here are a list of helplines you can call, just to chat to a trained advisor and get it off your chest.
MIND – UK 0300 123 3393 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm)
SANEline UK. If you’re experiencing a mental health problem or supporting someone else, you can call SANEline on 0300 304 7000 (4.30pm–10.30pm every day).
Papyrus HOPELINEUK. If you’re under 35 and struggling with suicidal feelings, or concerned about a young person who might be struggling, you can call Papyrus HOPELINEUK on 0800 068 4141 (weekdays 10am-10pm, weekends 2pm-10pm and bank holidays 2pm–10pm), email firstname.lastname@example.org or text 07786 209 697.
National Domestic Violence Hotline
Rape, Sexual Assault, Abuse, and Incest National Network (RAINN)
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline – For youth and adults
(800) 273-TALK (8255)
I hope you’re all still staying safe right now, my motivation to blog has been all over the place so posts have been quite slow. Take care, stay safe – Beth x