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Being mindful of your wellbeing.

This lockdown has felt somehow harder, longer and a little bit more of a strain on our mental health and wellbeing. And just as it took time to find ways of coping during lockdown 3.0, it’s quite likely that it’ll take time to get used to a new normal, and to reconnect with life outside of our four walls. As always we’re here to take care of you, and here are a few ways to help keep your mind as healthy as your body.

Handling fear and anxiety

Fear and anxiety are possibly the most common emotional responses any of us will feel as lockdown is eased. So first, build up tolerance – try doing something that challenges you every day, or every few days. Don’t beat yourself up if it doesn’t go well but keep at it. Keep a note of things you’ve achieved, enjoyed or surprised yourself doing. And vary your routines. If a walk at one time of the day is very busy, try walks at quieter times. But perhaps the most important thing to remember is to do what feels good for you.

Coping with uncertainty

Try to focus on the present – you can only do your best with what you have today. With regulations changing frequently, and lots of conflicting media discussions, try and keep a focus on the moment. Mindfulness meditation is one way of bringing your mind back to the present moment. Try and take opportunities to reset and relax. Talk to people you trust – it’s important to talk about how you feel. Don’t dismiss your concerns or judge yourself too harshly.

Fit body. Fit mind.

The NHS says what you are aiming for is: “To be moving quickly enough to raise your heart rate, breathe faster and feel warmer.” Why not download the NHS’s Couch to 5k running app? You don’t need any equipment or experience of running and it will guide you through getting started. Or the Active 10 walking app, which counts every step of walking you do - it all adds up. The main thing to remember is to be kind to your body once lockdown is over, many of us will switch back to busy life mode without taking time out. If there’s one thing that lockdown has taught us is that it’s good to have quiet times to restore and reflect.

One last thing to think about is A word – yes, alcohol. The recommended weekly intake is 14 units for both men and women - spread over the week of course. A wee tipple is ok, but try not to topple into too many units.