Week 1 of lockdown. Tick.
If you’re like me, it feels very disorienting to be at home and not be able to go about your daily life freely. There have been several meltdowns. And not just from the kids! I have to admit, I have been anxious about the uncertainty. It feels like everyone has been in survival mode and not really focusing on their wellbeing yet. But it’s important not to lose sight of it, if we are all to get through lockdown in one piece.
With that in mind, I wanted to share with you some of the things I have learnt this week, that take a bit of work, but can really help boost wellbeing:
1. STRUCTURE. It’s good – for me and for the children. For them, knowing what’s next – when it’s free time and when it’s worktime – has been really good for keeping them engaged and content. It’s been great for my husband and I, as we’ve been able to tag team our work and support each other, as well as the children, without too much fuss. Everyone needs to know what’s going on.
2. WORK/RELAX BOUNDARIES. Having a transition from home to work / schoolwork and vice versa is crucial for getting into the right headspace. It might just be as simple as going upstairs to brush our teeth before getting on with ‘work’ or packing up at the end of the day and leaving my laptop on my desk, rather than bringing it into the kitchen. The lines should not be blurred.
3. EXERCISE. Getting some gentle cardio and air each day. We have been going for a family walk – even for just ten minutes. It gives us all a change of scene and lightens the mood. Other days I have been out for a run or cycle and it makes such a difference to my mood and ability to cope. Keep moving for physical and mental health.
4. NOT AIMING TOO HIGH. I’ve realised expectations should be lowered. Some days are definitely tougher than others. I recognise I might not have slept well, and my mood is affected by this. It might be that I can’t get into my groove with my work at times. I am learning to let go of normal pressures and standards. Just do what you can.
5. WE ARE NOT ALONE. We are all in this together. It’s so tough having this uncertainty, but we are all going through it; admittedly, some with more worries than others. It’s different, it’s unwanted change and it’s hard. We don’t really have a choice. But we will get through it. One step at a time.
What have you learnt from this first week? I would love to hear your failures, learnings and what you will do differently next week firstname.lastname@example.org.