How are you feeling about the Coronavirus outbreak right now? If you are feeling confused, anxious or stressed out then you are not alone. Many students across the UK right now face the uncertainty of student life without lectures through strict social distancing or possibly self-isolation. It goes against everything we expect from university life. So, now more than ever, it is vital to take care of your mental health during the Covid-19 situation. Here are some Coronavirus mental health tips for students to help you out.
Stay in touch with classmates and friends
It is easy to become cut off and lonely during Covid-19 self-isolation or social distancing. You canât hang out at the student union or your favourite bar on the weekend. Even the library may end up out of bounds eventually. But, you all have social media, Skype and are just a message away. If your halls are close enough you can even copy what theyâve done in Spain and Italy and have communal gatherings through your windows. Start communal songs to break through the silence. Play communal bingo. Check the lighter side of social media for inspiration.
Try and stick to a strong, familiar routine
You will still need to go out and buy groceries from the supermarket. You will still need to go down to the laundry room and wash your clothes. Also, most importantly, you still need to keep up with your studies. If you are only social distancing then make the most of these normal activities with healthy flatmates. If you have to self-isolate then have your friends help out where they can. Try to find normality wherever possible. This also means keeping up with your nutrition, health care needs and fitness.
Adapt where necessary and learn from the experience
It can be difficult to view a crisis like the Coronavirus pandemic as an opportunity for growth or education. But, we can all learn to try new things and adapt to this temporary way of life. It may also teach you just how strong you really are. If you canât go out to eat so much you get the fun of learning to cook. If you canât go to the cinema you can still have movie nights with Amazon Prime or Netflix (depending on your budget). If you canât go to the gym you can clear a space in your living area and try some yoga. There can be a great feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction here. Focus on what you can do in spite of this Coronavirus outbreak and not on what you can’t do.
Minimise your exposure to the news
It is good to stay on top of the important headlines and Coronavirus government guidelines. It is not a good idea to get sucked into an endless stream of comments and tweets about the situation. Try and limit your time looking at those trends and mute Coronavirus or Covid-19 from your timeline if it gets too much.
Keep a journal
This is a crazy and historic time we are living in. Keep track of the experience by journaling Covid-19 for mental health. Write about your days â the good and the bad â to keep track of your feelings. Take photos of the weird things you and your flatmates get up to while stuck indoors. Have you seen the Indoor Olympics videos? How can you emulate that in your halls? Make videos and share them online. When this is over you can look back and smile at the good times.
Remember that brighter days will come.
Finally, hold on to the fact that the Covid-19 outbreak isnât going to last forever. There are hopes that we will be over the worst of it by the summer. So, make plans for the most epic summer break possible. Where do you want to go once public transport becomes safer? What films will you see when the cinemaâs open? What festivals and gigs may still go ahead during that period? Which beach will you visit with your friends? Write it out and stick it on your wall as inspiration. Make it colourful and vibrant and add to it whenever you get an idea, however big or small.
This situation will pass. You are strong enough to get through it.