We have been in lockdown for such a long time now and it's only natural to have mixed feelings about the situation changing!
Here we've collected some information and advice about dealing with your emotions at this time. The most important thing to remember is that there's no 'normal' response to lockdown or lockdown easing. Your feelings are valid and they may change from day to day!
Things you might be feeling:
Stressed and unprepared: Things are changing and we don't know how they might affect us.
Anxious or afraid: Lockdown made life more predictable. There were no social pressures and you could be in control of your environment. With lockdown easing, this comfort blanket is being removed.
Angry or frustrated: Increasing freedom means social distancing is harder to maintain. It may be becoming harder to adequatley protect yourself from the virus.
Confused: Socialising is allowed now, but should we be meeting up with friends and family from outside our households?
Unsupported: You might feel that you're being forced back to work without access to things like childcare, personal protective equipment (PPE), or safe transport.
What you can do to manage these feelings:
Get support from organisations that can help:
- mind.org.uk/information-support/helplines/ Mind Infolines provide information and support by phone, email and text.
- nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19 NHS UK coronavirus information. Includes guidance on staying at home, checking symptoms and supporting others as well as accessing NHS services from home.
- giveusashout.org/ Shout textline dedicated to supporting emergency services and key workers' mental health during coronavirus. Text the word BLUELIGHT or KEYWORKER to 85258.
- childline.org.uk/ Childline provides support for children and young people in the UK, including a free 24-hour helpline 0800 1111.
- ataloss.org The UK's signposting website for the bereaved. They can help you find bereavement services, counselling, and anything else you might need.
- mensadviceline.org.uk Confidential advice and support for men experiencing domestic violence and abuse by a current or ex-partner or family member.
- refuge.org.uk Support, information and advocacy for women and children experiencing violence and abuse.
Talk to someone you trust. This could be a friend, a family member, a colleague. It might feel hard to open up about your feelings, but many people find that sharing their experiences makes them feel better. You'll probably find that others are feeling the same way as you!
Control the things you can. When it feels like everything is getting too much and you're spiralling out of control. Try to come back to focussing on the things that are under your control. Write lists and plan your days as best as you can to help you feel more in control of what's happening.
Remember to seek help if you are struggling. 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.