Life after Lockdown: Future-proofing your Mental Health

While normal life still seems far away, we are getting closer to the other side of lockdown. This realisation is a relief for some, but a daunting thought for others as we prepare for life after lockdown and a new ‘normal’.

According to a YouGov survey, just 9% of people want a total return to pre-lockdown life.

What does this mean?

Albeit quite unsettling at first, society going into lockdown has made many people re-evaluate certain aspects of their lives, seeing their perspectives shift. Maybe you have realised that your work-life balance has been way off keel, or that you haven’t given enough time to connect with your elderly parents. Whatever the realisation, we have all had them one way or another. Coming out of lockdown is not going to be a simple transformation, with social distancing measures set to continue for months to come.

So what sort of challenges are we going to face?

More people will likely be asked to work from home more often. Limiting the amount of staff will make people more comfortable in an office environment. If this is the case for you, make sure you have a space in your house that is dedicated to working. This will help you be in the right frame of mind when it comes to getting your head down at home.

If you are required to be back in the office, you will likely have to comply with social distancing measures. This may be difficult if you usually work within close proximity of colleagues and rely on input from different members of staff. It is important to remember the bigger picture here, that social distancing in the workplace is to ensure the health and safety of your team and yourself. If you had to work from home during the lockdown, you know that productive working can be achieved so output shouldn’t be affected when back in the office.

It’s  also important to be mindful of your back to work routine. Burnout is a state of emotional, physical, and mental exhaustion caused by excessive and prolonged stress that is often triggered by work-related situations. It occurs when you feel overwhelmed, emotionally drained, and unable to meet constant demands. Be realistic with your task list when back in the office (or at home) and raise any problems you are facing. 

If you were one of many to lose your job during the pandemic, do not give up hope. As the economy starts to rebuild, there will be lots of opportunities, even if it means taking up a temporary role while you keep searching for your ideal job again.

If a significant challenge for you has been financial stress, get in touch with your bank to see what help is on offer. Maybe prioritise your spending into a budget planner to make sure the fundamentals are covered, and you may notice that some expense isn’t necessary.

Some people may be concerned to attend hospitals, in fear of catching something from other patients. While this worry is understandable, it’s paramount your health does not suffer as a result of not wanting to seek medical help. If something is wrong, you must get it seen to, as it may become a bigger problem if you avoid it.

The most significant challenge people have gone through during the pandemic is losing loved ones. The mixture of emotions surrounding the COVID-19 crisis uncertainty and then seeing someones health deteriorate so drastically is a tough situation to cope with. Please reach out for professional help if you are struggling to deal with the trauma of losing a loved one.

Mental health conditions are set to dramatically increase as a result of COVID-19, long after the pandemic is over. For example, 25% of people who survived ICU are likely to suffer from PTSD. An increase in stress levels is expected to occur for those who are caring for elderly relatives. Those who have tried to support their children with no access to school education may feel highly stressed, and for those feeling strains on their relationships following close confinement. There is also concern around a high risk of relapse in recovered anxiety patients, due to the general spike of anxiety amongst the population.

How can Onebright help to support you?

If you are struggling with your mental health, we are here to help. All our therapists are BABCP accredited, meaning they hold the highest gold standard a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist can be.

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