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Managing feelings about lockdown easing


 

Article taken from Mind.org.uk which helps explain feelings you might have about the coronavirus lockdown easing. It also provides tips on managing these feelings and where to get more support.


 

Lockdown has been difficult for many of us, for lots of different reasons. In full lockdown things might have felt more certain or predictable, as the rules were clearer. But now that lockdown restrictions are easing things might feel less clear, and there may be new challenges.

It can feel stressful when things are changing.



What might I be feeling about lockdown easing?



Anxious, afraid or panicked


You may worry about there being an increase in coronavirus infections, or about getting the coronavirus vaccine. The world may now seem unsafe, whether or not you felt like this before the pandemic.


Low, hopeless or tired


You may struggle to see how things will improve, or return to how they used to be.

You might feel even more tired and hopeless if you previously had coronavirus symptoms and are still experiencing their effects. If these symptoms last for a long time, it is sometimes known as 'long Covid'.

Change and uncertainty can also be very tiring so you may be feeling exhausted from the stress of managing all the uncertainty.


Angry or frustrated


This may be because people aren’t following social distancing rules, and you’re not able to avoid them. Or because you think the changes are wrong.

Other people may seem to have more freedom than you, if you live somewhere with more restrictions. Or it may feel like the changes will make your work more difficult or higher risk.


Conflicted or confused


Feeling conflicted or confused is natural when there is a lot of change. For example, you may want to socialise more if it’s allowed, but feel like perhaps you should still stay at home. You may feel especially conflicted if the people around you seem to feel differently about the changes to the rules.


Stressed or unprepared


You may feel stressed or nervous about more change and uncertainty, or protective of your lockdown routine, if you found that some aspects of lockdown have been positive for your wellbeing. This might make you feel conflicted about returning to how things were before.


A sense of grief or loss


You may feel stressed or nervous about more change and uncertainty, or protective of your lockdown routine, if you found that some aspects of lockdown have been positive for your wellbeing. This might make you feel conflicted about returning to how things were before.


Reluctant or unmotivated


You may be struggling to feel motivated.

For example, you may feel reluctant to rearrange events that couldn’t happen during full lockdown. This could be big birthday celebrations or weddings, or everyday things like barbecues, meet-ups, or dating.


Lonely or isolated


You may be struggling with feelings of loneliness. If you don’t have many people to connect with, you may also be finding it difficult to see lots of media stories about people socialising again.


Uneasy about relationships


You may feel uneasy about relationships that have changed during lockdown.


Distrustful


You might feel distrustful of the government’s reasons for changing the rules, or how things are portrayed in the media.


Powerless


You may feel like you don’t have a say in anything that’s happening.


A sense of injustice


You may feel a sense of unfairness about how the pandemic or the lockdown restrictions have affected different people.

For example, if you’ve been asked to go back to work when others are still able to stay at home and you feel this isn’t fair.


Under pressure


You may be under pressure to return to work when you can’t, or when you feel it’s not safe to. Or pressure to continue working from home, even if you’ve found it a difficult experience.


Unsupported or disregarded


You may feel unsupported. For example, if you're asked to go back to work without having access to things like childcare, personal protective equipment (PPE), or safe transport.







What could help me manage these feelings?


Get practical advice from services who can help


You can reach out for support from The Student Wellbeing Service or Mind's coronavirus useful contacts page lists lots of organisations who can help with different aspects of the coronavirus pandemic. This includes support for bereavement, work and parenting.


Try online peer support


Mind runs an online peer support community where you can share your experiences and hear from others. They welcome people from all backgrounds, whatever you're going through right now.


Give yourself time


Everyone has their own response to lockdown changes, and it’s important to take things at your own pace.


Express your feeling creatively


You might find that it helps to express how you are feeling about changes to lockdown. This could be by writing, drawing, painting or any other creative way that feels helpful to you.


Make choices to control the things you can


Although the coronavirus outbreak means that your choices are limited, try to focus on the things you can change, rather than the things that are outside your control. For example, limiting the amount of news you read when you are struggling may help.


Self-Care


There are lots of things you can try to take care of your own mental health and wellbeing. Explore our Self Help page & check out Mind's pages on coronavirus and your wellbeing and coping with mental health problems during coronavirus to find helpful tips for supporting yourself.


Seek Help


If you are struggling with your wellbeing, it is ok to ask for help. A good place to start is by getting in touch with The Wellbeing Service and booking an appointment with your faculty advisor by accessing their calendar. You can do that by following this link and choosing a time that works for you.


The NHS and other services have adapted to the coronavirus outbreak. There are video and telephone appointments available, if you need to speak to someone.

See Mind's page on accessing treatment and support during coronavirus for more information.

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