We understand that the current ongoing situation with Coronavirus (Covid-19) may feel overwhelming and upsetting. Whether you are self-isolating or just social distancing, coronavirus may be having an impact upon your mental health. You may be worried about the spread of coronavirus and how it may impact on your relatives and loved ones. Please know that it is okay to feel like this, but it is also important that we acknowledge these feelings and find positive ways of supporting ourselves.
We have collated some tips about looking after yourself and supporting others. We have also included a toolkit of resources and a list of services that may be able to support you through this difficult time.
For up-to-date information from the University, including advice from the NHS and the Government, please visit the University's Essentials page.
You can also join the RUSU Community page on Facebook to get ideas to keep you busy or to share posts to make others smile!
Ways to look after your mental health
- Create some routines and structure for your day (especially if you are in isolation). For example setting the hours of the day you are going to study, giving yourself breaks to exercise, and even small things like showering and getting dressed in the morning. Filling in a calendar of what you are going to do each day may give you some structure, find our template in the toolkit.
- Stay in touch with your family and friends via phone or video calls. This way you can maintain social connectedness and check in with each other.
- If you are in therapy - see if your counselor offers phone/video call sessions. Then you can still get the help you need and talk through any new worries or triggers you may be having due to coronavirus. If you’re not in therapy but are struggling to cope, please contact a helpline; we have linked some helplines below (under Useful Links).
- Create to-do lists of things to do when you’re bored and share this list with others. This might include; mindfulness colouring, video games, yoga online, duolingo (language learning app), card games, exercise tutorials online.
- Get some fresh air. If you are social distancing, going for a walk or run is still allowed as long as you keep in mind social distancing. If you are in isolation, if possible sit in your garden or open up a window.
- Take some time away from media. Especially if it is making you feel anxious. Look at your list of other things you can do.
Although it is important that we are practicing self-care and looking after ourselves, there are also ways you may want to support each-other and the community during this period. Helping others may also make you feel better and give you a focus.
- Share information on social media from reliable sources. Sharing unreliable information may result in more panic and scare-mongering so make sure you fact check your posts or don’t share anything you’re not sure about!
- Check in with friends and family. If you are not self-isolating and not considered to be in a high risk group, check in with friends and family on how you can support them e.g buying their groceries, dropping off medication, even just a facetime call!
This self-care bingo might give you some ideas of coping strategies if you are struggling with your mental health. Try and complete them all!
Keeping a routine is really important. Use our calendar template to plan your week:
- Mindfulness apps
- 10% happier
- Mindfulness colouring
- At home exercise