How to Protect Your Mental Health and Wellbeing During QuarantinePaul
There are still some people who can’t work from home (for example, if they’re deemed essential workers), but most are now doing their job from the comfort and safety of their homes.
However, as much as this ensures their physical safety, the same can’t be said of their mental wellbeing. For a lot of people, being stuck at home without the possibility to leave – apart from the designated hour of exercise – can take a toll on their mental health.
So, how can employees look after their wellbeing and ensure that they come out the other end stronger?
How Does Quarantine Impact Mental Wellbeing?
First of all, let’s look at how your mental health can suffer while quarantine and lockdown measures are in place. There’s the uncertainty and the worry about everything that’s going on, of course, as many people are concerned about their loved ones.
For most, quarantine brings isolation as well. Even if you don’t live alone, chances are that it is easy to feel isolated when you’ve been, essentially ‘cut off from the world’. All this makes people feel like they have no control over their current situation, which further adds to the mental load.
Social events are cancelled, pubs and restaurants are closed, and people are unable to meet up with family and friends. This, combined with the fact that you’re spending a lot of time at home, leads to cabin fever, alongside the social isolation.
It’s no wonder, therefore, that, when your mental health is under strain, it’s more difficult to stay creative, to keep up productivity and to feel motivated.
So, What Can You Do to Protect Your Mental Health?
Establish a Routine
We don’t mean just a work schedule. Of course, having one is incredibly important, since it can help you to remain productive when working from home. However, it’s equally important to understand that you need an everyday routine for ‘normal’ things as well, in order to avoid feeling directionless – but this doesn’t need to be strict either, so don’t give yourself a bad time if you don’t comply with it.
Perhaps you can take a break a couple of hours into work to stretch your legs or maybe you can take half an hour to play or chat with your kids in-between work tasks. Getting out of the PJs is also important, so that you’re not stuck with a leisure mentality throughout the day.
Having a clear distinction between work and home life can help your headspace and prevent burnout too.
Keep Up Your Connections
It’s important to maintain professional connections but staying in frequent touch with family and friends is even more important. Whether or not you’re a homebody or have an introverted personality, you need other people. This is key for both your mental and physical health. A simple chat can lift your mood and boost your creativity and prevents you from feeling alone.
Make the most of technology for this. From your mobile to video call apps like Skype, you have many opportunities to stay connected with those who matter the most to you.
Sure, gyms might be closed at the moment, but this doesn’t mean you can’t be active; on the contrary, working at home is easier than you may think. From following exercise videos on YouTube to using fitness apps, the possibilities are endless – not to mention you can still go out for a walk or a run.
Being active helps to break up your day, stops you from getting bored and helps you both physically and mentally. A sedentary life is not good for your health, as inactivity can have a negative impact on your muscle mass and metabolism as well, which doesn’t help your mental wellbeing at all.
Focus on the Positive Things
It’s so easy to read the news and become concerned, so try not to get carried away. Many people are doing amazing things; essential workers are helping to fight the virus and are keeping shelves stocked, and people are helping their neighbours to feel less isolated or fostering animals to help shelters.
These are stressful times but focusing on the positive instead of drowning in a sea of worry will do wonders for your mental health. Try to stay in the present as much as possible as well.
A good way to stave off frustration and boredom is to stay busy. During work hours, your mind is occupied with tasks but, once you finish for the day, it’s important to continue engaging in activities. For instance, take up baking, watch documentaries, watch your favourite movies with the whole family, do a virtual museum tour or take a free online course.
If you feel like your mental health can benefit from a ‘day off’ in which you choose to do nothing at all, then go for it (and don’t feel guilty that you’re lounging instead of finally finishing that DIY project you started so long ago).
Stay Hydrated and Eat a Healthy Diet
Not only does drinking a lot of water and eating healthy help your body physically, but it can also help your mental wellbeing. So, eat well and avoid snacking throughout the day if you’re bored. When you’re creating a routine, include meal planning in it to make this easier.
Protecting your mental health during quarantine is the best thing you can do, so go ahead and implement our tips to improve your mood and your productivity. Biz Hub specialise in serviced offices in the North of England, but we can also offer our clients a virtual office assistant to ensure business carries on as normal as possible.