Being in self-isolation due to the Covid-19 pandemic can take a toll on our mental health. Laura, 21, shares her tips for looking after your wellbeing.
In everyday life it’s completely normal to have down days. When we have those days we are usually advised to pick ourselves up by perhaps spending time with friends or simply going outside, but now things have changed. I have found that my usual coping mechanisms cannot be put into place during self-isolation so I have had to adapt. I hope that this post can give you some ideas if you are also struggling to cope on down days during self-isolation – you are definitely not alone.
Acknowledge and accept your down days
If you scroll down your social media during this time, I’m sure that you will see countless people exercising or learning a new skill while in self-isolation – this is great to see, but please do not think that you have to be doing this every single day.
I’ve had days where I have been very productive, but I’ve also had days where I’ve just wanted to watch movies and do nothing – that’s ok too. I think that it’s important to recognise when you are having a down day and accept that this will happen from time to time.
I think that it’s important to recognise when you are having a down day and accept that this will happen from time to time.
You could try and pick yourself up by doing an activity, but it’s equally ok to accept that you are having a down day and ride out the emotions – there’s always tomorrow.
Below are some tips of things that you can do to pick yourself up if you’re having a down day, but I do think it’s normal if sometimes these things don’t work and you simply just acknowledge how you feel – from my experience, these feelings will pass and you’ll feel better eventually.
Make a routine
Writing down a routine at the beginning of each week has really helped me to cope when I’m having a down day – if I find my mind wandering and overthinking I can just refer back to my routine, which brings me back into the present moment.
Your routine doesn’t have to be too complex, but just having a rough idea of the tasks that you want to achieve throughout the day should help you if you are feeling down. I even have time scheduled for watching movies etc. so I don’t overthink or feel down when I’m relaxing – just because we’re at home, that doesn’t mean we have to be constantly working.
I even have time scheduled for watching movies etc. so I don’t overthink or feel down when I’m relaxing.
I’d also suggest not getting too down if you do not complete every aspect within your routine. I have definitely had days in self-isolation where I’ve felt that I have done enough so I simply moved a task onto another day – adapting your routine when you’re feeling down can really help you to overcome this, as it allows us to recognise that we don’t have be ok all of the time.
If you find yourself feeling down during self-isolation, it can be very easy to slip into the mindset that you are alone, but this isn’t the case. I’d really recommend facetiming or calling your friends and family on a daily basis as this has helped me massively when I have felt down.
If you are not in a position to do this, I would recommend putting a YouTube video on or simply listening to a podcast as this can comfort you if you’re feeling lonely. It’s important to remember that we are all in the same position so I am sure reaching out to someone if you’re having a down day will benefit them as well as you.
If you find yourself feeling down during self-isolation, it can be very easy to slip into the mindset that you are alone, but this isn’t the case.
I hope these tips help you. The important thing is to remember that you are never alone and eventually this will pass.
More information and advice
Where to get help
However you're feeling, there are people who can help you if you are struggling. Here are some services that can support you.
Text YM to 85258
Provides free, 24/7 text support for young people across the UK experiencing a mental health crisis.
All texts are answered by trained volunteers, with support from experienced clinical supervisors.
Texts are free from EE, O2, Vodafone, 3, Virgin Mobile, BT Mobile, GiffGaff, Tesco Mobile and Telecom Plus.
Texts can be anonymous, but if the volunteer believes you are at immediate risk of harm, they may share your details with people who can provide support.
- Opening times:
If you’re under 19 you can confidentially call, chat online or email about any problem big or small.
Can provide a BSL interpreter if you are deaf or hearing-impaired.
Hosts online message boards where you can share your experiences, have fun and get support from other young people in similar situations.
- Opening times:
- 9am - midnight, 365 days a year