Annie, our Res Life Manager (RLM) at UniLodge Lincoln House has some tips for keeping our lives on track in difficult times.
Here we go again – life in lockdown! First time around many of us wrote long lists of things we were going to get down – skills to learn, books to read, TV shows to watch. This time around, it’s all a little bit more meh. While we (usually) remember to take ourselves off mute these days, we might not be quite so excited by the concept of Zooming catch ups with friends, especially if the anxiety of life right now is creeping up on us. But there are still things that we can do to help get ourselves – and each other – through this period (and there are people around to help us do it). I’d like to take you through a few of these things that might just help make this period a bit more bearable.
- Set yourself a schedule. It’s very easy to spend half of your day in bed when Stay at Home restrictions prevent you from spending much time out of your home. Don’t let the temptation of your bed get the better of you. Set an alarm to get you up in the morning, and to get you to bed at night too. Sleeping is vital to mental wellbeing – apps like Sleep Cycle can help you to maintain good sleep patterns, and often have built-in tools to help you get to sleep like audio tracks.
- Eat good food. It’s easy to fall into a trap of eating poor quality junk food. Try to get as much fresh fruit and vegetables, as well as grains and proteins, into your diet. Many of us have more time now than usual – if that’s you, try to set aside some time to learn to cook meals from fresh ingredients. Often it’s the cheapest way to eat.
- Know yourself. An advantage (and there aren’t many!) of this being our second lockdown is we should know by now some of the things that make us more anxious and stressed, and some of the things that calm us down. For me, for instance, I have certain playlists on my phone that I listen to if I’m really stressed, and I make sure that I’m getting my allowable daily exercise every day so that I get some fresh air. I also know that if I fill too much of my time with TV shows and films, I end up feeling awful. What works for you?
- Look for things to fill your time. They don’t have to be ‘productive’ as such, but taking into account ‘knowing yourself’, make sure you think about whether the thing you’re doing actually leaves you feeling good, not just in the moment, but afterwards too.
- Talk to people. Just because we can’t talk in person, doesn’t mean that we can’t talk. If you’re getting tired of the same old conversations (‘have you heard today’s numbers?’ ‘what time’s Dan’s presser?’ ‘isn’t this awful?’ ‘but we’ll get through it together!’), why not try doing something together – perhaps a craft activity, cooking, a play reading, or a workout. Many of us are pretty sick of screens right now – how about jumping on the phone and talking to a friend without video while you go for your hour of exercise?
And most importantly of all, remember that there are people here to help if you’re finding things tough. Here at UniLodge Lincoln House (and at many UniLodge properties), our Residential Life Program means that I’m always happy to catch up for a chat, whether you need help to connect with the right external services, or you just need to talk to someone for a while.
Externally, services that are available to you include the following: