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With a lot of the country either in lockdown or affected by COVID-19, what better time to hit a mental health refresh then now? Needing a bit of help managing your wellbeing during this uncertain time? Read on to find our tips and tricks to maintaining your mental health during a pandemic.

At times it can seem almost impossible to keep a productive routine and remain positive in lockdown. When the world seems a little scary and confusing it can definitely trigger some negative emotions. How should we deal with those? How can we set ourselves up to remain as positive and productive as we can when we are confined to our homes? 

Please note: IDEAS are not mental health professionals and only provide this information as a basic guide. If you are feeling down and worried about your mental state during this period of time please contact your GP or a mental health service. We will provide contact details at the bottom of this article.

Recognise your feelings

Throughout your day take moments to acknowledge your current feelings. With so much going on all the time between work, news articles and social media etc. it can be hard to take a minute for yourself and your feelings. Do a quick check in and acknowledge if you are feeling happy, stressed, relaxed or anxious in that moment. Write down on a piece of paper on a scale form 1-10 on how it is your are feeling. You might feel different everyday, or be consistently anxious over a certain period of time. This can help recognise patterns or things that might not be helping you. If your scores are really high all the time seeking professional help might be a good option.

Move your body 

Whether its a walk around the block, an online yoga class or some youtube exercise videos any movement is good movement. Sometimes it can be easy to sit on the couch all day and binge watch your favourite netflix season, however too much of this can leave us feeling down. Release those feel good chemicals, get your heart rate up a little and soak in the sunshine. Please speak to your GP before beginning any high intensity exercise you do not normally do. 

Check in with your friends

If you are feeling overwhelmed with everything, chances are some of your friends or family are too. It helps to talk and be honest about how you are feeling, especially with those closest to you. If you don't live with anyone, organise a virtual coffee or catchup with a friend. Lack of social contact can easily make us feal uneasy or upset, so organising set times each week to have a chat with your nearest and dearest could really help keep spirits high.

Create a self care plan

To keep you on track, it can be helpful to write things down. Creating a self care plan doesn't need to be hard. The internet is a great place to start, with plenty of pre-made self care templates available at the click of a button. See the Black Dog Institutes Mental Health Check in template and Lockdown Self Care Plan Template. By writing down and realising that some activities help you when you are upset, you are setting yourself up for feeling good in the long run. Your self care plan is a great tool to keep on hand or share with your friends and family. If those closest to you know what helps you, they can encourage you to practice self care more often.

Get professional help

Talking to our friends and family can be good, but sometimes what we really need is some professional guidance. It can be a good idea to get a mental health care plan from your GP or call a free crisis service which are available all hours. These workers are trained and will happily listen to you, regardless of the topic. Below are some free mental health services you can call.


Beyond Blue

Phone: 1300 224 636
Hours: 24 Hours 7 Days a Week
Online Chat: Chat Online Here
Hour: 11am-12am AEST 7 Days a Week
Email: https://online.beyondblue.org.au/email/#/send 

The Blue Knot Foundation

Phone: 1800 421 468
Hours: 9am-6pm AEST Mon-Fri 9am-5pm AEST Sat, Sun & Public Holidays
Web: https://www.blueknot.org.au/
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Mental Health Foundation of Australia Helpline

Phone: 1300 643 287
Hours:  24 Hours 7 Days a Week
Web: https://www.mhfa.org.au/ 

Kids Helpline

Phone: 1800 551 800
Hours: 24 Hours 7 Days a Week
Web: https://kidshelpline.com.au/ 
Online Chat: Chat Online Here
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Mensline Australia

Phone: 1300 789 978
Hours: 24 Hours 7 Days a Week
Web: https://mensline.org.au/
Online Chat: Chat Online Here

Suicide Call Back Service

Phone: 1300 659 467
Hours: 24 Hours 7 Days a Week
Web: https://www.suicidecallbackservice.org.au/
Online Chat: Chat Online Here
Please note: IDEAS are not mental health professionals and only provide this information as a basic guide. If you are feeling down and worried about your mental state during this period of time please contact your GP or a mental health service.

IDEAS does information so you can do life.