'LOCKED' DOWN, BUT NOT OUT!
Does being in a government-imposed COVID-19 lockdown sometimes feel like you’ve been ‘grounded’ by your parents? You’re not alone. Both the lockdown and the pandemic itself are taking their toll on everyone.
During this time, it’s especially important to stay ‘grounded’. This means finding ways to prioritise your emotional and mental wellbeing and keeping things in perspective.
Try these practical tips to stay upbeat during lockdown:
Work It Out
While it can be tempting to play couch commando, it’s important to keep your body physically active. Just 20 minutes of exercise each day will not only raise your fitness level, but also your endorphins, providing an instant mood boost.
Try going for a walk to grab a takeaway coffee. Take a quick dip at the beach with your dog. Roller skate/skateboard/scoot around the block with the kids. Download a yoga app on your phone and stretch it out by the pool. If it’s raining, cast a fitness video to your TV and get physical in your living room. Or crank up Spotify and dance around your kitchen while you cook. The possibilities are endless!
Stay In Touch
Just because we’re physically separated from our loved ones doesn’t mean we can’t remain close.
Pick up the phone! Enjoy this time to actually call (not just text) old friends for a proper catch up. Send your workmates funny (but not inappropriate) memes. Leave a coffee on your elderly neighbour’s doorstep. Start a Facebook group and share Netflix picks. Start a virtual book club and share podcast recommendations. Ask your mum to send you family recipes to try. Join in online gaming with your nieces and nephews. Make a virtual photo album of the kids for Nan on Mother’s Day. These small gestures will brighten everyone’s day – including yours!
Maintain regular coffee catch-ups using FaceTime or WhatsApp. Try a dinner date using Skype or Zoom. Mark special occasions with a bigger group using the House Party app. It’s ‘virtually’ the same!
Remember that this lock down is only temporary. Your loved ones will still be waiting for you on the other side of the pandemic.
Routine is Key
If you’re working from home, maintain your normal work habits as much as possible. Go to sleep and be ready at your desk at the times you normally would. Make a ‘no trackies’ rule and stick to wearing your regular work clothes at home. Take your regular breaks and keep up the good work each day.
Remember, you’re an essential worker playing an important role in protecting our economy.
If you’ve found yourself suddenly unemployed, set aside time each day to actively look for work. Engage an employment agency to assist you. Or try one of the free online courses currently being offered by the government to expand your skills.
Remember, there will be other jobs and your skills will be needed to re-build our economy.
If you’re home-schooling the kids, replicate their school routines in fun and creative ways. Order ‘tuck shop’ from your local take-away shop once a week. Replace school sport with a Zumba workout. Get the kids gardening to replace environmental studies. Do some baking to replace home economics. Make break time fun with a handball game. Raid the $2 shop for art class supplies. Download a language app and learn Japanese together. Go online and search for fun science experiments using ingredients you already have at home.
Remember, you’re playing an important role in ensuring Aussie kids don’t fall behind in their education.
It’s not just your work and school routines that are important. Preserving your daily wellbeing is paramount. Maintain good hygiene, eating habits, exercise, water intake and sleep hygiene. Track your progress using a fitness app on your phone or watch.
Avoid too much screen time – especially any COVID-19 news that is increasing your anxiety. Instead, opt for board games or puzzles and search for good news stories, videos posted by comedians or articles that will increase your learning in a topic of interest.
Where possible, maintain your medical appointments via Telehealth and continue to take prescribed medication.
If you’re struggling, ask for help. In an emergency, call 000 or Lifeline on 13 11 14 any time for free.
Ask your GP for a Mental Health Care Plan to see a psychologist. Artius offers appointments with qualified, experienced Psychologists via Telehealth, no matter where you are in Australia.
If you have a Health Care Card, Pension/Concession Card or are economically disadvantaged due to COVID-19, we are here to help. We currently bulk-bill these appointments.