Life Lately… Mental Health, Social-isolation & WFH

Well what a start to the year…

It’s only been three full months and it feels like a lifetime. So much has happened in such extremes and so quickly so it has been so difficult to process everything. I’ll start off with a summary of January and February. January was a really hard month following on from a difficult December. My mental health had declined very quickly and it was such a struggle to do a lot and I lacked so much motivation. I slipped in uni and daily things until mid January. Things started to pick up a little and I was slowly finding my motivation again and getting back on top of things. Then in February things had improved a lot and I was feeling better than ever. I began to get into such a healthy routine that was so productive and made me feel amazing. I felt well physically and mentally due to doing all the little things that make me feel good and well.

Then fast forward from the beginning of March to now when things deteriorated again quite quickly. When the restrictions across the country started to be introduced for the coronavirus, we all still carried on with our daily lives until further notice, expecting it to ‘not be too bad’ and certainly not be so restricted where we are in the South West of England. Little did we know, it was all about to change drastically and so quickly even more. So everything began to close down and more restrictions were made across the country to now working completely from home and only going out for the necessary tasks such as one daily exercise, food shopping and picking up health prescriptions. As much as I thought it would be hard, I did not realise it would be this difficult.

I had got into such a good and healthy routine with uni, doing errands, my placement, going to appointments, going to the gym and just feeling so good and productive mentally and physically. When this all had to stop and be put on hold, it was very difficult. I began to feel so isolated (hence the self-isolation) but in a sense that I felt trapped and my problems began to arise again even more intensely. I don’t think I appreciated how my life was then and how much of an impact the little things I do and people I see each day had a huge positive impact on my well-being. I have started to feel more hormonal, tearful, depressed, my OCD was getting worse (to be honest I didn’t think it could get worse but clearly it did) and just in general bleh. I found it so hard to adjust to these changes and being stuck indoors more.

I am such an active person that loves to be busy and out and about. I also found it so hard because a) I struggle with unplanned change and b) I had zero control over this and I think that is why it affected me more than I expected. My mental health was no way near amazing before, it had just slightly improved due to keeping busy and having a healthy routine but it hasn’t been right since the end of last year. I was keeping so busy and occupied that I was slowly working through my problems but I was also so busy to not worry too much about my problems but now being stuck in my own head space and four walls constantly, I guess I began to worry more about the problems. So yes that is basically it in a nutshell. It’s only really today where I have been feeling a tad better, enough to do a few daily things but I have also done a few things to start building myself back up again slowly.

I have been doing these things first:

  • phoned my doctor and changed my medication
  • spoke to my mental health team and will be receiving support as time goes on
  • had some time off social media and everything else in general just to sit with my feelings, express them and have a good ol’ cry
  • started my online CBT course for my OCD
  • journalling more and doing worksheets and workbooks for mental health and personal development
  • trying to let go more of things that won’t matter in time.
  • I am really listening to my mind and body and trying to express myself in any way that is helpful
  • communicating with people and keeping in contact with online support. I am actually asking for help when I know I need it
  • trying to nourish my mind and body the best way I can at the moment
  • doing some yoga if I’m up for it but always trying to get daily fresh air
  • When I am in a bit of a better head space on some days, I try to do something I enjoy such as writing, reading, baking or watching a film on Netflix
  • allowing myself to have the day off if I am feeling like utter rubbish

I just want to give you a reminder that not every day will be great and productive or perfectly positive. We all get days, weeks or months where we feel like utter crap and that’s okay. But it’s about building yourself back up and getting back to your good ol’ self. It’s also okay to have a few days off to do absolutely nothing but watch Netflix. Because sometimes we need that and realistically we all need some time off to rest and look after our beautiful souls. I think it’s just realising when you are doing too much or when your mental health is going down hill, to then listen to your mind and body and cut yourself some slack. Just remember we cannot always be on the go and it’s healthy to rest and do nothing every so often.

Sending all my love who may need it at this difficult time,

R x

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