As the UK heads towards a life without ‘lockdown’ and social distancing restrictions being to lift, keeping your mental well-being healthy is still a priority.
Last week, we discussed the importance of looking after your mental health following the COVID-19 pandemic.
Research conducted by New Economics Foundation found 5 steps to support mental health and well-being, that are supported by the NHS and Mind.
Whilst we have been in lockdown and social distancing guidelines have been in place, socialising with friends and family has felt difficult. We will have all found our way of keeping in touch with loved ones, either with a scheduled phone call each week or planning a Zoom call to keep you entertained and distracted.
If you live alone, it can become very easy to go days without physically seeing or speaking to another person, so ensure you make time to contact friends and family. Over 2 million people aged over 75 live alone in the UK, and many say they can go a month without speaking to a relative, friend or neighbour. At Heritage Healthcare, we not only deliver expert care services, our teams across the UK provide social support to help clients keep their mind active and to prevent social isolation.
The new government roadmap out of ‘lockdown’ has highlighted a possible date for the rule of six to be re-introduced. From 29th March, outdoor gatherings of either 6 people or 2 households will be allowed in public and private areas. This will allow more people who are feeling unconnected to make plans with friends and family and start face-to-face socialising again.
Regular exercise has been shown to reduce depression and anxiety and improve cognitive function. As we enter Spring, the weather has started to warm up, leading to a great chance to get outdoors and exercise.
It could just be a swift walk in your local area, a bike ride with the family or maybe now is the time to take up running. There is a range of workout plans and ideas available on the NHS website here, suitable for all fitness types.
Learn Something New
Gaining a new skill and new knowledge can go a long way to improving your mental well-being. Whether it’s learning a new craft, language or signing up for an online course, learning something new helps to raise self-esteem and feel accomplished.
New skills can allow you to connect with new people and can be enjoyed in your own time. You can set your own goals to achieve, which help to motivate you and distract you from any worrying thoughts you may have.
Be Giving and Kind
Throughout the pandemic, many people have looked for ways they can give back to their community and support vulnerable people or frontline workers.
Being giving and kind to others has shown to make people feel positive about themselves and rewarded. Research has found that committing to an act of kindness once a week can increase well-being.
Acts of kindness and giving could be as small as saying thank you to someone who has shown you support or helping a neighbour to retrieve essential shopping items. It could also be a fundraising activity for a charity or service that has a big impact on your community.
Mindfulness is about giving yourself time to stop, think and be in the moment. It’s not always about yoga, meditation or being spiritual; it can be switching off for 5 minutes, appreciating those around you or allowing yourself to enjoy a hobby.
With mindfulness, you can appreciate what is happening in the present rather than feeling overwhelmed about what the future may bring. It helps you to have self-understanding and to make positive choices.
More information about mindfulness can be found here – https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/drugs-and-treatments/mindfulness/about-mindfulness/
Heritage Healthcare has continued to deliver expert care and support to clients throughout the pandemic, ensuring individuals are safe within their own homes. We are focused on not only supporting our client’s health needs whilst living at home but have supported their mental well-being to provide reassurance and comfort during a difficult time.
To find your nearest Heritage Healthcare office, please click here.