Tips for managing stress during lockdown
By Charlotte Morgan
Life can be pretty stressful sometimes, and at the moment we might be feeling a little more stressed than usual, trying to get on with life during a global pandemic.
In this blog post, we’re sharing our top tips for coping with feeling stressed while studying from home, with social distancing measures in place, and lots of uncertainty all around us. We’ll also share some useful resources at the end of this post.
- Stay connected with family and friends. Share your worries with someone, and don’t be afraid to ask for help if you’re stuck with something and it’s stressing you out. And don’t forget, you can still socialise virtually! It’s really important to keep making time to catch up with your loved ones.
- Plan your schedule and make sure you include plenty of time for taking breaks, relaxing and doing fun things. Having a schedule will help you feel less stressed and more in control; making time for relaxation and fun will help keep you motivated and productive when you are working.
- Following on from tip number two, Prioritise your workload. Plan when you are going to do certain tasks, and get the most important things done first, making sure you meet deadlines with plenty of time.
- Keep your work space separate from your bedroom. This will help you sleep well and mentally switch off at the end of the day.
- Speaking of sleep, get plenty of it. While your routine might be a bit different to the usual at the moment, try to go to bed and get up at similar times every day. Take time to wind down in the evening, and try to avoid looking at your phone for hours once you get in bed. Get some more tips for sleeping well here.
- Don’t dwell on stressful thoughts in your relaxation time. We sometimes have a tendency to spend a lot of time going over and over something that’s stressing us out in our minds, which can make us feel worse. That’s why it’s important that when you’re done with work for the day you give yourself a proper break and engage your brain with other things. If you find your thoughts drifting back to a problem you haven’t solved yet when you’re meant to be relaxing, do an activity that will divert your attention, such as playing a video game.
- Try something new. Taking up a new hobby or doing a new activity can be a fun and engaging way to switch off. Why not try something creative like drawing or painting, or learn how to cook something new based on what you’ve got in your cupboards at home? There are loads of YouTube tutorials for just about anything you can think of.
- Get outside and move your body when you can. It’s really important to spend time outside getting fresh air every day, while still observing social distancing. It’s also important to keep doing regular exercise – do whatever you enjoy, as long as it gets you moving.
Some things that have helped me to cope during lockdown: cooking, walking in the park, and playing games!
Resources for managing stress and looking after yourself while social distancing:
Young Minds is the UK’s leading mental health charity for children and young people. They’ve got lots of advice about Coronavirus and mental health. If you want to speak to someone about how you are feeling, you can find details of helplines and other useful websites from Young Minds here.
The mental health charity Mind has a fantastic guide about what stress is, and how to manage it.