There is no mask for mental health – how to keep your brain at bay during lockdown

With 2020 drawing to a close, we have once again entered yet another national lockdown. As businesses close and isolations continue, it’s safe to say we are lacking in festive spirit this year. The Government have told us how vital this lockdown is to protect us physically from the effects of the Coronavirus, but what about mentally?

These long periods away from work, socialising and normality are causing many to spiral into an unhealthy mindset, that could be just as damaging as the virus itself. So how do we make it through yet another challenging month of restrictions and exactly how detrimental have they been to our mental health?

It’s a scary time of uncertainty, worry and stress. However, this time we must consider something far more important than stockpiling toilet rolls and Christmas presents, and that would be Mental Health. With everyone trapped at home, self-isolation can start to become a feeling rather than an action in some people’s minds. It can be suffocating and extremely lonely as each day drags past, but it’s important to remember to protect our minds in this troubling time and to remember that this won’t last forever.

Some may have embraced the downtime that 2020 has given us, but with the constant restrictions and endless lockdowns, it can become overwhelming. Unlike in March, when the first lockdown came into place, things are different. With the weather turning cold and Christmas being overlooked, many have become lost and feel helpless as normality disappears.

So, how do we make it through this global lockdown?  Good question.

Everyone’s mental health will differ, and sadly, no one cure exists. But there are many tips and helplines that can ease the stress and worry at this time. Here are our top five:

Building a routine

There are many ways to keep the day feeling ‘normal’ so that you don’t feel lost or bored. The best way is to make and stick to a routine that you would emulate in your everyday life. Whether it be waking up early at the same time each day or scheduling your mealtimes, it can massively help your mental health.

If you are struggling to schedule out your weeks, check out Daily Planner App, that can make one for you.


woman planking on gray asphalt road
Exercise is a great way of keeping on top of your mental health.
Image credit: @armedshutter – Unsplash

Gyms may be closed, and spin classes cancelled, but it’s still important to be exercising and staying active. It’s a well-known fact that exercising releases endorphins which triggers a positive feeling in the brain. Mentally this can help a lot, especially if you are feeling overwhelmed by the lockdown. It will also improve your physical health which helps lower stress and anxiety levels, resulting in better mental health.

Workout channels you can use to workout at home:

Staying Connected

It is crucial to stay in touch with your friends and family, especially at the moment. It can feel lonely when isolating and not being able to visit your loved ones, but there are other ways to stay connected.  From quizzes to facetimes, you won’t be alone. You will realise that everyone is feeling the same, and help you feel less overwhelmed.

Talk and listen. This could really help you and your loved ones, who might also be struggling in silence. 


woman wearing white headphones
Get those headphones out and release your stress.
Image credit: @brucemars – Unsplash

It’s been proven that listening to music can really help improve mental health! The release of dopamine can improve mental wellbeing and lift your mood. Below are some playlists that can help increase your happiness and lower your stress. Dance, sing or relax, and see the difference it makes.

Here are just a few positive playlists you can listen to:

Not Being too hard on yourself

You may see people completing a million tasks a day on social media, and it can pressure you to be doing the same. But don’t feel as though you have to match up to anyone else. You are entitled to cope with this lockdown, however you see fit. Take time for yourself, have a sit-down and a cup of tea. This won’t last forever, and protecting your mental health is the most important task.

Hopefully, this shall help you through this difficult time. However, if you are still struggling, many helplines can offer you support during this time.

Please check the links below if you feel you need further help during these tricky and unprecedented times:

Don’t let your mental health take over. You are not alone.

Written by Sian Hills

Feature image credit: Campaign

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