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Keeping Your Spirits up During Lockdown
because you just want to know
As of November 2020 England entered into its 2nd lockdown, the major difference this time is that we don’t have the weather or the lighter evenings on our side. This will hit the general populace extra hard. So now is an especially good time to invest in your wellbeing by creating healthy work habits at home, exploring self-care methods and staying connected with colleagues.
The Covid-19 pandemic has led us all to change our daily routines and created uncertainty about the future. As we continue to face health, financial and caring concerns, it is no surprise that a poll from the office of national statistics has shown a sharp climb in the percent of UK adults who feel anxious or worried about the virus.
Clearly, this a challenging time and focusing on our mental health and wellbeing has never been more important. The workplace is a completely different place for all of us. In the meantime, we have a chance to improve our working practices for when we come out the other side – in particular the opportunity to invest in our own wellbeing, explore self-care methods and experiment with flexible working. There are a number of practical steps we can all take to look after ourselves and boost productivity and wellbeing while working from home.
All organisations have had to change the way they work to survive during these times, but working from home is something many will not be used to. It can be easy to slip into bad habits where work life and home life blur into one. While many may have muddled through so far, now is a good time to create or review remote working policies, so that they work best for you.
As a starting point, Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) England released guidance to help employers support staff who are working from home. It provides a number of steps you can take to create healthy working habits at home. For example, something as simple as setting up a workspace that is separate from your sleeping area, or encouraging people to take a full lunch break, can make a huge difference in preparing you for work and make it easier to switch off at the end of the day.
Self-care is an important way for you to manage your mental health, particularly at a time when many support measures are more difficult to access. Exercise or going for a walk, meditating, breathing exercises and ensuring we eat well are all options to consider. If you want to make the most out of your working day during lockdown you need to look after your body and mind, but it’s important to work out what is most effective for you.
You could even replace your usual commute time with a half-hour self-care session to set you up for the day and help guard against burnout. Encourage people to use their extra time constructively elsewhere, rather than on extra work. It doesn’t have to be an intense workout, it could just be time to do something you enjoy. That could be watching your favourite television series, connecting with family or friends, doing something creative or learning a new skill.
The main thing to remember is to treat yourself and others with kindness throughout the pandemic.
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