Looking after your health and wellbeing
We are experiencing a time of unprecedented change to how we live and work. At times like this it is crucial to look after our health and wellbeing. How we respond to these changes depends on things like our physical and mental health and the support that we have. It's important that you take care of yourself, and ask for help if you need it.
There are many things you, and those around you, can do to stay well while staying at home and practising self-isolation and social distancing.
Five ways to wellbeing
Evidence suggests these 5 steps can help improve your mental health and wellbeing. Here are some tips to keep your spirits up and feel energised during and after the lockdown.
- connect in Croydon through the #CroydonTogether campaign, sharing what you're doing to help or how others have helped you
- stay connected with those around you by supporting others who need help during the COVID19 pandemic - contact Croydon Voluntary Action
- stay in touch with your family and friends with face-to-face connection on apps like FaceTime, WhatsApp or Zoom
- schedule virtual coffee and tea breaks or dinner with family and friends
- you can tune into music from the London Mozart Players, the resident orchestra at Croydon's Fairfield Halls, from your own home throughout the pandemic
- if you don’t use technology, you could have a conversation with a neighbour from the window or over the garden fence
2. Keep learning
- there are many opportunities to broaden your knowledge through Croydon Libraries’ online services, where you can access a variety of books, magazines and films
- the home library service is currently still operating
- the Museum of Croydon is offering a digital Inside the Clocktower programme, offering behind-the-scenes looks at the collections which have not been seen before
- check out more than 100 e-learning courses available on Croydon Learning
3. Be active
- being active helps our general wellbeing and 10 minutes of activity can make you feel better – even housework counts
- get some fresh air every day, following the government’s social distancing guidance – you could walk or run, go into the garden or open your windows
- you can still be active while at home, check out Croydon’s JustBe website, the NHS fitness studio or Sport England's stay in, work out tips for inspiration
- keep up some of your normal daily routine, like getting dressed as you were previously and doing what you would usually do before leaving home, to help maintain your mental health and sleeping patterns
- don’t forget to take regular breaks too!
4. Take notice
- pay attention to how you are feeling and check on those around you as well
- sharing things that have made you happy throughout the day with friends, family or colleagues can help to lift your mood
- create a wind-down routine to reflect on your day
- writing a short and simple to-do list for tomorrow can help you stay focused and looking forward to the week ahead
- if you or your family or friends are struggling with your mental health, you can get support from:
We have seen some amazing generosity over the past few weeks with people freely offering their time, resources and expertise. If you want to help people in your community, you can:
- sign up to Croydon Voluntary Action
- support those who might be isolated through your local Age UK
- join your local COVID-19 Mutual Aid Group
- send a text or put a letter through your neighbour’s door to let them know you are there for them
Don’t forget to ask for help for yourself if you need it through the details above. Age UK Croydon and Croydon Voluntary Action (CVA) have set up a telephone befriending service, where people who would like someone to talk to are paired with a volunteer so they can have a regular chat and some company – contact 020 8686 0066.
Free online tools, advice and guidance
A number of organisations have published some really helpful advice about mental wellbeing whilst at home and during the crisis. Including NHS, Mind, Anxiety UK, Samaritans.
- Croydon’s JustBe website
- National guidance from the government
- NHS Every Mind Matters website
- NHS - helplines and support groups
- Guidance to support children and young people
- Anxiety UK