Addressing mental health in communities and services
At times of disruption, change and uncertainty, it is natural for us to worry, and this can cause problems not only in feelings of anxiety and concern, but sometimes can also affect how well we function in our daily lives, our workplaces and our relationships. Increased irritability, emotional exhaustion, exacerbation of pre-existing conditions, poor concentration and poor sleep may be examples of such mental challenges.
How to look after your own health and wellbeing
Feeling under pressure is a likely experience for you and many of your colleagues. It is quite normal to be feeling this way in the current situation. Stress and feelings associated with it are not a sign of weakness, but a normal reaction to difficult times, and can be managed.
Follow health advice, especially about avoiding the risk of getting infected or passing on the virus (e.g., wash your hands and distance yourself from others in public).
Stay informed, but don’t immerse yourself in too much negative news. For example, only follow trusted and respected news sources. Seek information at specific times, once or twice a day.
Maintain a healthy lifestyle: eat well, sleep well and exercise. Don’t resort to negative coping mechanisms such as smoking or drinking too much.
Take time out if you need to. If a situation is very stressful, try to remove yourself from it.
Find trusted people to talk to, such as friends or colleagues. It can be helpful to speak to a counsellor, if available, if those around you cannot help.
The World Health Organization has produced an excellent, well-tested self-help guide for dealing with stress.