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Whether it’s getting used to having the whole family at home or it’s your first time without the structure of office life, it can be frustrating being stuck at home. That’s why it’s important to look after and protect your mental health.

As more people around the world get used to the idea of being isolated in our homes for the next few weeks, we wanted to ensure people’s mental health didn’t suffer. We’ve put together a guide to help you through the days when you’re feeling trapped:

Get into a routine

This is such an important point and is the basis of every article about homeworking. Just the same as if you were going into the office, you need to schedule time for work, activities and meals. It is also important to have dedicated places for working and relaxing. Setting these kinds of boundaries will help you and anyone you live with to have a sense of normality.

Don’t overload yourself with information

It’s great to keep yourself updated with news and social media, but if you overload yourself with information you could send your anxiety level rocketing. Allow yourself 30 minutes a day or set times to look at the news. Take social media rumours and dubious news sources with a pinch of salt!

Keep talking

It’s likely your friends, family and colleagues’ mental health might be affected at this time. It’s important to keep in touch and check in through video tea breaks or even just a text message. Not everyone has a support network nearby so it might be nice to check in on your vulnerable neighbours too, if you get the chance.

Have a tidy

This might sound boring but when we start decluttering it can have an impact on our mood. When we come across items and photos that we forgot we had it can lead to us reminiscing. So, get rummaging through those bottom draws, or paper filled cupboards. Then share the memories you’ve found with your friends and family, whether it’s to start a conversation, or to roll on the floor laughing, you’ll find it takes away the stress of being home all day.

Make time for yourself

It’s not very often we find time to read a new book, paint our nails, have a soak in the tub or just relax with a glass of wine. Self-care makes everyone feel better, so let’s make the time for it today! Go and give yourself a pampering session.

Date night

It can be difficult when you’re at home with the kids, partner or family all week, causing tensions to rise. So, why not get all dressed up for a home cooked meal and a bottle of wine with your partner for date night. Or do a bit of mother-daughter bonding with a hot chocolate on the sofa and a movie. Enjoy each other’s company while you’ve got the time to.

Get the creative juices flowing

You don’t need to be an artist to be a little bit creative. Grab some paper and coloured pens and draw what you see. But if that fails, try adult colouring books or colour by numbers. These can be really therapeutic and easy to order online. Or go to youtube and follow some videos of your favourite crafty things to do, even try something you’ve never done before. Now is the time to try out a new hobby.

Keep exercising

When we exercise, we release endorphins which is what makes us happy. Even if we don’t always feel that way when we are exercising. Just because you’re at home doesn’t mean you have to stop. Make the most of those free online workouts, try a little bit of yoga or with Spring around the corner why not get out in the garden.

If you are struggling with isolation and need to chat to someone about your mental health, then please reach out. Whether that is someone here, a professional, a friend or family member, it always helps to talk.