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Dos and Don'ts for lockdown 2

Updated: Nov 4, 2020

  • Don't put too much pressure on yourself to be productive. In the first lockdown we saw constant pressure to pick up a new hobby, or start working out or even to learn how to cook. You don't need to learn a new skill to survive lockdown.

  • Don't get caught up in fads. There's no doubt in my mind we'll see a surge in diet fads with a new lockdown approaching because people are still making them feel bad for when they put a little bit of weigh on in the first lockdown. IT IS NOT YOUR AIM IN LIFE TO LOSE WEIGHT. If you put a bit of weight on either in the first lockdown or this one, it's part of life. We're stuck inside the house with nothing to do, give yourself a break. And do not invest in skinny teas that make you shit yourself.

  • Don't compare this lockdown to the first one but do try learn from your mistakes. It can be really easy to compare yourself to, well, yourself. Try to stop yourself thinking "well I did this in the first one so why can't I do it now" whenever it comes down to productivity. Getting out is harder because of the weather. A lot of us also experience seasonal depression disorder (me included) which will make motivation harder to find. And we're all round feeling a little beaten up at this point.

  • Don't overwhelm yourself with trying to consume every piece of news out there. It's important to stay up to date but we can get too caught up in numbers and all the bad that's going on. Allow yourself time to switch off from the news and try to consume some good things too (ie the happy newspaper)

  • Do make sure you change your clothes every day. I got stuck of a routine in the first lockdown of constantly staying in my pyjamas and it just made me feel worse. Comfy clothes are a must but find a couple of pairs of comfy joggers/leggings and make sure you get changed into them daily. Onesies are also an option with the cold weather approaching.

  • Do separate your work day to your day to day life if you're working from home. Just because you can work after hours doesn't mean you should. Keep your work day to the hours you're paid for and if someone asks you to do something at 8pm when you finished at 5pm you can do it the next day. Remember to put your laptop/papers away at the end of your work day so you don't have to look at them on your down time.

  • Do try get out in nature when you can. Staying cooped up in the house can make some people crazy (aka me, I hate not getting out on walks, I'm like a dog) so take advantage of the time you can get out. The weather is making this one harder to achieve this time around but use this excuse to buy a new cosy hat. Get your wellies and a waterproof on and you can reward yourself with a steaming cup of tea when you get back.

  • Do try keep in contact with loved ones. Pub quizzes, workouts together, coffee breaks over zoom or phone calls can really help you stop feeling isolated. It's cheesy as hell but really made me feel less separated from the world.

  • Do try do things bit by bit instead of all at once. Loneliness really struck me the first time around and I lost touch with my friendship group, even now I can't get myself to get involved in the group chat because of my own anxieties. But talking to people singularly makes me feel less alone. So I've checked in separately with people instead of messaging as a group.

  • Do try to get people involved if you notice them withdrawing. Like in the point above I mentioned I withdrew from a group chat so much that I still can't get myself to talk in it, but a different group of friends would mention me by name in the chat when they noticed that I started not talking. Something as simple as "Holly you joining the quiz tonight?" helped me overcome my anxiety with it. Asking people publicly when you notice they're scared to be involved helps more than you know.

  • Do try to create a little routine to keep your moving. Even if its 9am wake up and 10am go sit on the sofa. Create something that still means you get out of bed. but remember don't be so hard on yourself if you don't stick to it. Some days will feel like there's no point getting out of bed so it might be hard, but you're harder.

  • Do try to keep up with the things you love. Whether its games or writing or painting. Anything, try to enjoy your time a little bit.

  • Do remember date nights are important. If you're a couple you might not be spending quality time together even if you're constantly together. Try to arrange a date night once a week where you both get dressed nice and actually pay attention to the other person.

  • Do be honest with someone you trust about how you're actually feeling. Lockdowns can feel lonely, it's important to make sure you're being honest about how you're really feeling about everything going on. Don't bottle up your feelings.

  • Do be kind to yourself. Remember this is a hard thing we're experiencing and there's a lot of fear going around. Be nice to yourself and cut yourself some slack.

  • Do limit the amount of time you spend consuming news. It's important to stay up to date but it can also be very overwhelming. Prioritise yourself over staying completely up to date with everything going on.

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