Unless you’ve been living outside civilization for the past few months, you will be well aware that we are currently at the forefront of a worldwide pandemic. A global health crisis known as Coronavirus or COVID-19, which has inforced worry and anxiety through the world’s population.
Seven days? Fourteen days? Most of us may find the idea of being stuck inside the house for a long time extremely daunting and nerve-wracking. Although it is important to “flatten the curve” of daily cases that put pressure on our health care system, it could lead to a lesser evil: boredom and stir craziness known as ‘Cabin Fever’.
For a lot of us, 2 weeks off could seem an absolute dream! Time to binge-watch your favourite series on Netflix, put your feet up for some much needed chill time with a whole load of comfort food!
But for those living alone, the elderly, people with underlying health problems or with mental health issues this will be a major struggle. It is so important to reduce anxiety by keeping your both your body and mind active!
If you’re not already in self-isolation, the chances are that you will within the next few weeks. Here at OM, we believe it’s so important to remain within our strong British mentality and ‘keep calm and carry on’. It’s important to follow the government’s guidelines in order to keep ourselves and our loved ones safe.
Nevertheless, during the darkest of times, we can experience the most beautiful acts of kindness. We are seeing the world pull together in unity during these uncertain times.
One thing we know is you can’t quarantine music; you may have seen footage of Italy playing and singing from balconies in locked-down cities. Obtaining a positive attitude not only expresses strong resilience but highlights our empowering togetherness when in a crisis; even through the toughest times these small cities may have ever seen.
Self-isolation is a clear factor in order to help prevent the spread of Coronavirus indefinably; exhibited by China, where they have now closed their main Cronaviras hospital due to not having enough paitents to sustain it!
However this can also spur on second-hand health problems. For some people who are in self- isolation this may trigger some mild mental health problems. Studies shown by people who have spent a winter in a polar research station have revealed that being in self-isolation for a long time have reported feeling anxious and/or depressed. With nearly 50% of them feeling extremely irritable and struggled with sleep and experiencing memory loss.
Keep in mind that while coronavirus isolation shouldn’t be to that extreme, it still exhibits concerning effects from being enclosed space for a long period.
Social Distancing may seem frightening – Our generation have experienced an extreme increase of cases of mental health issues within the past few years, being alone with your thoughts could seem like the last thing you may want to do. Having a Routine is an important necessity and can help avoid relapse into depression or anxiety.
Tackle these issues and help yourself by structuring your days, as you would a day at work. Structure your sleeping pattern when you get out of bed, when you get into bed. Give yourself a set time to have a meal and try to keep on track of them. Make a to do lists and stay productive and motivated and if you can work from home then do it! Keeping your mind busy will help improve your mindset and reduce the anxiety you may be feeling as a result of the News.
Use this precious time to spend some well needed quality time with the family, get together round the dining room table and draw out of the dust covered boardgames; that haven’t been touched in years. You forget how much you enjoy it!
It’s important to follow the government’s guidelines to stay safe! Ensure to keep washing your hands with hot, soapy water for at least 20 seconds and if you have a high temperature and cough then be sure to ring 111 and distance yourself from people for a minimum of two weeks.
Why not take a stroll in this fresh spring air, we are hopeful for some sun soon and don’t we all need it! Being cooped up in the house is in no means good for neither your mind nor body. Bring hand sanitiser with you and keep at least a 2-metre distance from others. Take your dog and walk through the park; exercise releases endorphins known more commonly as the ‘happy hormone’ which will naturally lowers your stress levels.
When returning from a walk, feeling lighter with hopefully with a clearer mind, why not see what you’ve got knocking around in the cupboards. Get inventive with your meals?!
As you may be aware of the nation’s current issue in regards to stockpiling. You may have an unfortunate shortage of your most common shopping items.
Why not view the cup as being half full. Rummage through the backs of the pantry, get the kids together to see what you can all whip up when you put your minds together.
This pandemic will cause a lot of us to make some rational important decisions, could be missing out on a friend’s birthday or cancelling a wedding. These decisions could ultimately feel like a selfish endeavour but try not to let the guilt to take over, this is something each of us will go through.
This will change all of our everyday lives for who knows how long, which we will have to learn to adjust to. Although saddening to think about, the quicker we all pull together in aid of the problem the quicker we can all get back to normality. But most importantly preserving the lives of those most vulnerable!
We all crave human interaction; loneliness will have an indefinite spike in the coming months with the most vulnerable being asked to remain isolated for a minimum of 12 weeks!
Things which you could do to help either yourself or loved ones could be arranging Skype, Facetime or whatever video app available on a laptop or tablet. For a lot of the older generation who don’t have social media, they may feel as if they’re losing touch with the outside world. Providing people with a device which allows them to communicate with loved ones would be hugely beneficial with the aim to life spirits and ensure they don’t feel alone.
Use this time presented to you efficiently and productively, why not achieve things you’vealways been meaning to get done but have been admittedly been putting off. That could be starting to learn how to play the guitar, learning a different language or getting your nose stuck in that book that’s been on your shelf that you ‘haven’t had the time for’. Well it just so happens we have been given the gift of time, so use it!
On a slightly more positive note we are all guilty of experiencing FOMO from time to time (fear of missing out) but what a liberating feeling not having that feeling?! There will quite literally be nothing going on, meaning you will have quite litterally nothing to miss out on!
If you are struggling with loneliness contact ‘Independent age’ providing befriending services: 0800 319 6789