In our weekly slot where we chat about wellbeing and mental health matters, we just want to check in with you, say hello, and offer a few useful links.

Hello, and welcome to Wellbeing Matters, our weekly spot to drop by and have a chat about life, the universe and whatever is nipping at our heels.

You don’t need us to tell you that, deep in week 3 of social distancing, the world is a bit different right. A little alien, a lot isolating. Emotions are treading unfamiliar territory, there are new challenges being thrown up for people to deal with, like home schooling, getting a basic shop in and caring for older people.

It can be overwhelming. We’ve been there. When the helplessness and frustration kicks in because you just can’t do something that needs to be done, without endangering yourself or the people you care about.

It’s like we’ve collectively checked into the Hotel California. And as the song says, this could be heaven, or this could be hell. There’s a lot of voices out there trying to promote the good, to keep us fit and motivated. And this is great, if you find one that hooks you in, makes your world a little bigger, takes you outside the confines of your own four walls.

However, filter out those voices that tell you that you aren’t doing lockdown properly if you haven’t turned your yard into an Olympic obstacle course, mastered the art of Zen and read 50 great novels. If you find your solace in comfort reading, silly memes, or seeing how many cheese Doritos you can cram in your mouth at one time, enjoy it.

For those of us who are in full lockdown, we’ve checked in, but checkout seems distant. Age, wonky immune systems, underlying conditions. The guilt from our illness shackles can become magnified, especially through the disapproval or irritation of those who do not perhaps realise just how frightening or serious this time is for us.

Let’s change check in a little. Let’s drop by below the line here, and just leave a word or two to say hello. That this too will pass. And we’re all doing our best, in the role designated to us by our own personal circumstances. We might not have pink champagne or mirrors on the ceiling, but we do have a world of online entertainment and support at our fingertips.

You’ll see a list of support organisations below. Check in with these if things are becoming bleak, or browse the NHS list of apps that might help you during this time. If we’ve missed any you’d like us to add, then let us know in the comments and we’ll amend the list.

Wherever, whoever you are – you’re doing alright. We’re moving through this, albeit at what may seem a torturous pace. Take a moment to open the windows, watch spring bloom. Summer will return eventually, and we will be able to step out into it with relief. But for now, we hope you and yours stay safe.

Support Organisations:

Age UK

Childline

CRUSE Bereavement Care

Campaign Against Living Miserably

MIND

National Domestic Abuse Helpline

NHS Mental health app resources 

Rethink Mental Illness

Samaritans

YoungMinds

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