Dealing with the stresses of lockdown – Part 2

Last time we looked at how the lockdown was putting a strain on everybody, especially those who are experiencing anxiety or depression for the first time.

As the lockdown continues and social distancing measures seem to be here to stay for the time being, it’s important to ensure we can make the most of it and combat feelings of depression and anxiety.

So how do we do that?

First of all, we need to accept how we’re feeling and then look at why. Are we anxious because we don’t know how we will survive financially? Are we depressed because we can’t see friends and family? Are we scared about the virus and how it could affect us?

All are valid reasons and reasons shared with a lot of people for being upset and afraid.

I personally, am terrified of contracting the virus as I have several life threatening illnesses including asthma and a nut allergy to name a few. Lets face it, my lungs were not cut out to handle a respiratory virus. However, I continue on, keep up with my workouts and my daily inhalers to build up my lungs so I am best equipped to deal with whatever happens.

As I said in my last article, it’s very easy to slip into the habits of getting out of bed much later than usual, staying in your pyjamas and binge watching TV until you feel like you’ve got square eyes. However, this is synonymous with behaviours of depression and during days outside of lockdown we would see this as worrying behaviour, so why is during lockdown any different?

Yes we can’t go outside and see friends and family but we can get into positive little habits that will make you feel better and after the lockdown you can brag that you got loads done during this time.

So where do we start?

In my last article I discussed my morning routine. I talked about how I leave Darren in bed to sleep while I get up, drink coffee and read a magazine or a book. This alone time gives my brain the much needed time to think outside of social media and physical noise. It’s a good way to set up the day.

Once I’ve woken up I look at things that need doing around the house and get cracking, cleaning what I can because, let’s be honest, we’ve all been a bit slobbish during the lockdown. Doing chores gives you a small bit of physical activity and once you’re done, gives you that clean space which will help clear your mind of horrible thoughts.

Once I’ve done my chores, I get changed into my active wear and get working out, squats, sit ups, anything to get my body moving and working out to exert some of that nervous energy I might be feeling.

Next I shower and pamper myself, taking my time which is something I couldn’t normally do outside lockdown as there was always too much to do.

After my shower I finish my pamper session with a full body moisturiser and straightening my hair so that I feel good about myself. I get dressed in my favourite clothes and finally sit down on the sofa.

I’ll browse social media for a while, working on the business, checking emails and such before I stop for lunch, something relatively healthy like a  cous cous salad or some soup.

After my late lunch, I finally rest, watching netflix with my partner, sometimes treating ourselves to a cheeky drink or two. It feels good to relax after such a busy day.

Obviously, I mix it up, workout at different times of the day, go for walks but I always like to be productive before I sit down and relax for the day. It lures my brain into thinking its had a busy day.

All this being said, I slipped up on this last week when I forgot to keep up with my routine. I stayed in bed  for 1 or 2 days until nearly midday, checking obsessively over the news to see whether lockdown was coming to an end soon. I neglected my exercise and my meals were sporadic. I was slipping into depression and if I wasn’t careful I’d end up miserable and bringing the rest of the household down with negativity.

So one morning I forced myself to get up and get coffee even though I really didn’t want to. I wanted to stay safe and warm under the covers, forgetting about the days ahead of us.

I sipped my coffee and contemplated the day and continued writing this article because its what I knew calmed me down.

My fingers felt heavy on the keyboard, hesitant almost, as if I had nothing to say, yet they kept on and before I knew it I had more than enough to say.

During this lockdown we have been told to look after our most vulnerable people but what if our most vulnerable people are those we can’t see clearly by facts and figures, what if those vulnerable people are those who struggle with worries and fears everyday? Surely if we can boost our own positivity we can improve our time in lockdown (and come out looking amazing due to all the workouts and self pampering sessions we’ve all had!)

What are your thoughts? How are you coping with lockdown? Let us know on Facebook, continue the conversation and share the things you do to make yourself feel good during lockdown.

Published by Kirsty Allen

Kirsty Allen is a writer who specializes in lifestyle blogging & fiction writing. 'The Ramblings of a Madwoman' can be found at her website theroamblogger.com

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