IT’S OK NOT TO BE OK

These are challenging times for us all, and the climate of fear and uncertainty can have a – sometimes – significant impact on our mental wellbeing. Here are some ideas on ways to stay
positive and resilient.

Control and influence:

Thinking about what we can control and what we can influence helps us to see where our power lies; whilst it can feel like things are happening to us, we do have control and influence. I can control washing my hands.I can influence my child to do the same. Knowing what we can do allows us to have some power in a situation that can leave us feeling powerless. The stuff that is out of our control and influence, our influence is where we probably spend most of our time worrying – which is futile. Learning to accept the things we cannot control and influence, and identifying the things that we can, allows us to become more resilient and solution focused.

Positive thinking and catastrophising:

We might get a feeling of fear, panic or worry and it is our thinking that helps to keep it in place. Looking out for when we find ourselves tumbling into a cycle of negative thinking and challenging it – I know this isn’t true, for example – can be helpful. As can recognising when we are catastrophising – the doom-laden ‘what it’ thought process should be stopped in its tracks as soon as we notice it.

Looking for the good:

We don’t have to just wait for this to pass to notice the good stuff. Every day write three good things from the day before, one thing you are grateful for, and one thing you are looking forward to about that day. It doesn’t have to be big things; it can be little moments like, a sweet word from your child. This is also something that can be done as a family, collectively recognising a good thing or things from that day. Even at times like this, there is an abundance of goodness, we just have to take time to notice it. And in doing so, we help to build a positive mindset.

Mindfulness and meditation:

Mindfulness and meditation can be really useful to stay calm. Calm, Headspace or The Mindfulness App are tools that can help you to do this.

Social media:

Social media can be good for keeping people connected but it can also damage our mental health if we don’t use it carefully. Think about how you are using it at this time – is it adding
value or making you feel worse?

It’s OK:

Remember, it’s OK whatever you’re feeling. Fear, panic, hope, just feel without judging yourself.

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