Supporting our mental health during COVID-19
Sun 2 August 2020
COVID-19 seems to be with us for longer than we expected. During this prolonged period of working in ‘iso’, we checked in with our team and asked them what they are doing to build their resilience and support their mental wellbeing.
Recognise that it is okay to not be okay.
“Some days you’ll feel good and some days you won’t and that’s ok.” – Amber Tratter, Relationship Manager
The AND team recognises the importance of removing some of the pressure we place on ourselves and acknowledges that this is a challenging time for everyone – be kind to yourself.
Nothing beats a bit of fresh air.
Whether it’s having lunch outside, going for a walk, or even taking a call outside, the team agrees the benefits of going outside to get some fresh air and taking a break from the screen.
Lunchtime walks are one of our most popular strategies for supporting our mental health. Combining walking with talking also keeps us connected with colleagues and friends.
Staying connected with friends, family and colleagues is really important during COVID-19. Our regular AND team catch ups and themed Friday afternoon drinks connects us and brings some laughter to our day. In one session Amber casted everyone into a movie character actor/actress!
Take time away from watching the news and social media.
Skipping the news and spending some time watching funny and light-hearted movies or series rates highly as a popular mood lifting ‘iso’ activity.
Structured routines also help in building resilience. Isabel Heiner, our Program Manager, finds it useful to wear her ‘work clothes’ in her standard work hours, including shoes which she says her roommates find a bit weird! To help separate her ‘work life’ from her ‘home life’, she rides her bike every morning and afternoon to trick herself in a commute too.
Life’s challenging, eat the chips.
Whether it’s chips, wine, or chocolate – whatever your guilty pleasure is, enjoy it! Life’s right challenging now.
Take a day off.
Time-out taking a long weekend or a day off during the week can increase your motivation and productivity and help energise you.
Create ‘distance’ between work and home.
Including an end of the working day ritual helps Amy Whalley, our deputy CEO. At the end of her working day, Amy turns off her laptop, her lamp and tidies her work desk to help get out of ‘work mode’.
Some of the team have been challenging themselves by getting more into cooking and baking. This may not help with the COVID kilos but is great fun / a great distraction!
“I find it’s a bit of mediation to keep me calm and relaxed.” – Rida Leung, Executive Assistant
Start a project.
Starting a new project such as a puzzle, cleaning or reorganising your wardrobe, knitting a scarf, and making pom poms are other helpful distractions for us.