OUR TOP 7 TIPS FOR STAYING AT HOME DURING CORONA VIRUS
Due to the Corona Virus we are experiencing something none of us have ever witnessed in our lifetimes or are likely to do so again.
So during these unprecedented times and as we enter into a period of staying at home, what can we do to maintain our Wellbeing?
If you are reading this you have an additional complication to many others; you have someone at home with you who has mental health needs.
If you have someone in your family unit or living with you who has Depression, Anxiety or OCD you will likely find this period is harder as their needs become ever more evident.
We take a slightly different view on the things we can do to get through this period the best we can, because lets face it, this is what we are trying to do!
Our top tips
If you have Children in education/ nursery they are no longer at school, they are now home with you. This is yet another layer of pressure.
Different ages groups present different challenges, however the key thing is to engage with them.
Talk your children about what is going on and what it means for your family. If they are young they will likely be confused and scared. They will miss their friends and routine and wont’ really understand why.
If they are a teenager they are likely to find this very challenging as they are separated from their friends and have all their raging hormones to contend with also.
The key thing is to talk to them and engage with them at an appropriate level.
This is what it has been called in the media and by parents, but this isn’t what it is.
Take the pressure off. We are not expected to educate our children.
At this point the work coming home is revision and is there to give our children structure, routine and something to do. It doesn’t matter if you don’t do it.
What matters is that you spend time with your child and you parent. As parents we teach all the time anyway. Don’t let social media and other parents put you under pressure.
As our readers will know my husband has Depression and my son is almost 7 now.
Our son feels my husbands depression acutely and I am looking at this time together as a time to try and heal our family.
We have no choice, we are in the same space so I am looking to do whatever I can to bring them together. There is more time for games in the garden for example. If it’s appropriate for your family, embrace the opportunity, it’s a silver lining.
Divide the living space into purposed zones
Our homes are now a home, a workplace (perhaps for more than 1 person) a place of education for our children and potentially a place to recover from the virus.
When we go to work or school we are able to transition from one place to the next. This gives our brains the opportunity to decompress from one activity and to get ready for the other.
Try to create this at home.
If you have space for a home office, then protect this as a work space.
You can then leave ‘work’ for lunch and after work and move to your living space.
Likewise for the kids, you will find it is much easier for them to focus on what you are asking them to do if they are in the environment which is appropriate to that activity. Physically transition them from one thing to the next.
Nutrition remains as important as ever, it is vital you continue to eat well. It will be tempting to snack, particularly as you may become bored and perhaps down.
Try to make sure you have the right things in the house. With the supermarkets struggling to keep the shelves stacked this could be difficult, do your best, that’s all we can do.
Remember there is a link between nutrition and mental health, so look to maintain your 5 a day and beyond.
If you have children, try and involve them in the meal choices and cooking, they are more likely to eat it and there will be less waste.
Currently we can still go out for a walk, run or bike ride. When the weather is good, do it!
It is essential to get that feeling of space, the fresh air and to reconnect with the earth.
Being outside grounds us. Soaking in the air and sun energises us.
As the weather warms up and if you have a garden, take a book outside, do the kids painting outside.
We can still go out into the open space as a family unit and on our own. This is something we should all do daily and is utterly essential. Cabin fever will put extra pressure on the whole family.
Routine and structure
As a family decide upon and stick to a routine. Everyone needs to get to the end of the day and feel they have achieved something. If you don’t have a routine it will be very easy to slip into lethargy and the day will pass, then the next and the next.
Set a routine which works for you all; still get up for the work week and do something different at the weekend.
Giving structure to how you live at home will give everyone a sense of security and normality and everyone will know what is expected of them.
The most important thing to remember is that we haven’t done this before, we are all finding our way and we are all learning. Many of us are anxious and fearful where we haven’t been before. Community is key at such a time, find a way to connect with others. Those who understand and empathise with what you need, those to boy you up, not bring you down.
Our minds can run away with us and create all sorts of stories about what might happen, try and shift these thoughts, they don’t serve you. Just go day to day, one at a time, that’s the best we can do right now and we are all in this together.
As hard as it might seem now “This too shall Pass”.
Be safe and be well.
Click here to connect with our community in our Forum. This is specifically focused on those living with someone with Mental Health needs, come in and share and let’s support each other.