Coronavirus and your wellbeing

If you are feeling anxious, worried or overwhelmed during this period of uncertainty then that is perfectly normal – you are not alone.

On 23 March, the Government introduced three new measures to encourage all to stay at home and to keep away from others:

  • Requiring people to stay at home, except for very limited purposes
  • Closing non-essential shops and community spaces
  • Stopping all gatherings of more than two people in public

This is bound to affect our mental wellbeing, but the good news is that there are lots of easy and free ways to look after ourselves.

Follow the 5 ways to wellbeing

Evidence suggests there are 5 steps you can take to help improve your mental health and wellbeing. These are to connect, be active, take notice, keep learning and to give.

Connect

It is important to keep connected with your loved one whilst social distancing and isolating. Below are some tips on how to do this virtually:

  • Use video calling to chat to friends and family who would usually see
  • Organise to watch the same TV show or to read the same book as someone else and discuss this over the phone
  • If you have Netflix, join Netflix Party and chat to your friends whilst watching a movie or show together

If you have any concerns, questions or need support of any kind related to coronavirus, you can contact Richmond & Wandsworth’s dedicated Community Hub on 0208 871 6555 or covid19support@richmondandwandsworth.gov.uk.

Be active

Physical activity makes you feel good. You can exercise at home no matter your level of mobility and fitness. Below are some examples and helpful links for all ages:

  • For those with mobility issues: chair based exercise video
  • For those with children who will be missing out on Physical Education classes in school, Joe Wicks (The Body Coach) will be hosting 30-minute exercise classes for children Monday – Friday at 9am. These workouts can be done at home by tuning into his YouTube channel
  • For those who are missing exercising at our sports centres, some centres are sharing exercise routines using social media. You can find regular home workout videos on Teddington Pools and Fitness Centre’s Instagram page
  • Other ways of having physical activity in your daily routine include sitting less, cleaning your house, gardening and dancing to music

Keep learning

Research shows that learning new skills can help improve your mental wellbeing by raising self-esteem, helping to build a sense of purpose and helping you to connect with others. You could:

Take notice

Pay attention to the present moment – to your own thoughts and feelings, and to the world around you.

  • If you are working from home, take notice of your colleagues are feeling when speaking to them on the phone
  • Open a window to let fresh air circulate in your home
  • Write down your thoughts and feelings
  • Create a plan for how you could reduce your carbon footprint
  • For general tips and more information on how to be mindful, visit the NHS website

Give 

Acts of giving and kindness can be incredibly rewarding. You could:

  • Ask your friends, family or colleagues how they are and really listen to their answer
  • If you can afford to, donate to charity
  • Help local efforts to support others. Find out more on how you can help

See more information on the 5 ways to wellbeing.

Helpful links

Updated: 24 March 2020