Mental Health

How To Cope With Post-Lockdown Anxiety

June 3, 2020
How To Cope With Post-Lockdown Anxiety

With the restrictions beginning to ease around the world I thought it important to discuss post-lockdown anxiety. During this lockdown, many of us have adapted to a new way of living, a new schedule, and a new way of doing everyday things. Many people haven’t been outside for months, or only gone outside once a day for an hour at a time so it is natural that they may feel a little anxious to get back into the swing of things. Coming out of this new way of living may cause high levels of anxiety, especially when there is the possibility of another lockdown. Below I detail ways that may help you combat this post-lockdown anxiety.

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Don’t Rush Yourself

If you aren’t ready for jumping straight back in to normality, give yourself small steps. Go out twice in one day instead of once and each day increase what you’re doing until you don’t realise you’re doing it anymore. Taking it one day at a time is important, don’t focus on what life will be like in a month – no one knows – focus on today. It’s a slow and steady process, but slow and steady wins the race and it could be the best way to beat post-lockdown anxiety without overwhelming yourself.

Talk To Your Boss

If you’re feeling anxious about going back to work it’s important that you talk to your boss. They may be able to settle your mind by outlining all the steps they’re taking to keep you all safe, or you may be able to come to an agreement where you work from home a few days a week and stagger your return to the office. Don’t be too hard on your boss, as we’re dealing with something new they are also learning the best ways to deal with this virus and the restrictions that come with it.

Listen To Local Advice Only

Don’t worry about what’s happening elsewhere in the country, listen to your local advice. If you’re from a town Scotland and you see deaths rising in a town in England, of course you’ll be alarmed. However, you are still in Scotland and will have different advice and restrictions. Read your local newspaper (this can also be done online) to see what restrictions are currently in place in your local area and follow those.

Remember That Post-Lockdown Anxiety is Normal

You’ve been cooped up in your home for several weeks, but so has everyone else. Feeling anxious about getting back to reality is expected and your neighbours, friends and family are probably feeling the same. We’re in unprecedented territory here and no one knows the best way to get back to our normal routine. So talk to your friends and family about how you’re feeling, share ideas and comfort each other.

Monitor Your Inner Dialogue

Are your thoughts contributing to your post-lockdown anxiety? Find a way to change your thought process to help you get through the day. It’s so easy to slip in to the negative through process that stops us from doing things, but there are ways to combat this. One of the best ways to do this is to consciously change your thought process. If you find yourself thinking in a negative way, start thinking positive. An example of this: if you find yourself thinking about what you did wrong in any scenario, change the thought process to be thinking about what you will do to change that in the future.

Inform Yourself

Don’t just inform yourself of the lockdown restrictions, inform yourself of the best ways to protect yourself when venturing out. Research ways that may make you feel more comfortable getting back to reality and use them. This should help ease post-lockdown anxiety because you know you’re doing everything in your power to protect yourself and others around you.

There are so many resources that can help you and your family deal with and learn about anxiety:

Anxiety UK – https://www.anxietyuk.org.uk/

Mind – https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/anxiety-and-panic-attacks/about-anxiety/?gclid=EAIaIQobChMI3Mz45rPl6QIVTO7tCh0viAw-EAAYASAAEgI62fD_BwE

Mental Health Foundation – www.mentalhealth.org.uk

Support In Mind Scotland – https://www.supportinmindscotland.org.uk/

No Panic – www.nopanic.org.uk

Rethink Mental Illness – www.rethink.org

Samaritans – www.samaritans.org.uk

SANE – www.sane.org.uk/support

YoungMinds – www.youngminds.org.uk

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33 Comments

  • Reply Corinne June 3, 2020 at 12:54 pm

    There’s so much anxiety and paranoia right now and it’s comforting to find posts that talk about how to deal with these anxieties. Thanks so much for writing this.

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 3, 2020 at 12:56 pm

      Thank you! Yes, there is a lot of anxiety right now. It’s important to keep the conversation going.

  • Reply Jeffrey June 3, 2020 at 5:14 pm

    Some great tips. Your inner voice should always say positive things to you so you don’t back away from facing what’s ahead. Great post.

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 3, 2020 at 5:15 pm

      Thank you. Yes, our inner voice should always say positive things.

  • Reply Adam June 3, 2020 at 5:39 pm

    Great post, about a topic that’s going to be so important over the coming weeks/months. So many of us (I’m including myself) are going to find it quite difficult to return to normal. A lot of people are going to need support.

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 3, 2020 at 5:42 pm

      Thank you. You’re right, so many people are going to need support!

  • Reply Diffusing the Tension June 3, 2020 at 6:58 pm

    I’m definitely pacing myself as far as resuming a more normal lifestyle! I’m just not confident that things are as safe as some are saying. I’d rather be safe than sorry. Hopefully we’re for sure in the clear soon!

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 9, 2020 at 12:56 pm

      Definitely agree! I am also not confident that things are as safe as some people are saying! Stay safe.

  • Reply Chris - CJ Attractions Guide June 4, 2020 at 11:00 am

    Great post, I am anxious about returning to work, it feels like I am starting a new job again!

  • Reply Jenny in Neverland June 4, 2020 at 11:12 am

    Great tips. I’m getting more and more anxious as this goes on because we are clearly in NO POSITION to be easing lockdown with the amount of deaths still happening. I’m just still trying to distance myself as much as possible and not planning on going ANYWHERE for the foreseeable!

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 4, 2020 at 11:14 am

      I agree. The longer this goes on the harder it will be to get back in to the swing of things. We are definitely not in a position to be easing lockdown! It’s ridiculous that we’re easing it now when deaths are still high. Yeah, I’m happy in my flat for now.

  • Reply lifewithclottedcream June 4, 2020 at 12:19 pm

    Thank you for writing this! You’ve raised some excellent points and I agree with you that we should inform ourselves in order to reduce our anxiety levels. We are all in this together!

  • Reply williake June 4, 2020 at 1:53 pm

    I feel like so many people can relate to this because there is just SO much anxiety everywhere! So much uncertainty is really unnerving, but really what helps me is trying to take it one day at a time like you suggested. great post!

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 4, 2020 at 1:55 pm

      Thank you. Yes, it’s hard for everyone right now.

  • Reply SHRUTI DUBEY June 4, 2020 at 4:55 pm

    Not many people are talking about post-lockdown anxiety and this is the thing that people needs be to aware of during this time as everything is opening now.

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 4, 2020 at 4:58 pm

      Agreed, everyone just expects things to go back to normal straight away, but it won’t work like that and there will be a level of anxiety involved

  • Reply Diffusing the Tension June 5, 2020 at 1:20 pm

    I’m quite nervous to resume normal activity, but I know it has to happen at some point. I keep just trying to focus on things I can control in the mean time. Thanks for the great tips!

  • Reply Alyssa Pittner (@LifeIsHomemade) June 6, 2020 at 12:28 am

    Great post! I actually am a homebody so staying home is something I look forward to. The fear of the virus is still a concern to me but I just do what I can to stay safe.

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 6, 2020 at 12:31 am

      I am the same, I look forward to staying home. We’re all in the same positon, all we can do is try to stay safe.

  • Reply Two Tickets To June 6, 2020 at 3:00 pm

    Thank you for sharing these – brilliant tips at what is sure to be a strange time for everybody. Going back into the office will be strange – I think we’ve all got very used to the ‘new normal’, and it’ll certainly take some adjusting back. These resources will come in very helpful.

  • Reply Dave June 7, 2020 at 9:38 pm

    Thanks Jodie, this is a very important subject. I’m sure many people will struggle when things go back to “normal”. Thanks for putting this list of resources together

  • Reply Loren June 8, 2020 at 1:17 am

    Thank you so much for this post! Where I live (Canada) all restrictions/regulations are being eased and everything seems to be going back to normal but the anxiety and paranoia is still there. Listening to local advice/news is such a great tip, less focusing on what’s going on across the country and more on the news in my city/region.

    Loren | Plaid + Sugar

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 8, 2020 at 1:20 am

      I’m in Scotland in the UK and England is coming out of lockdown earlier than us and it fills me with so much anxiety! Definitely best to focus on your local restrictions as different cities have different rules about transport etc.

  • Reply bellavitanyc June 8, 2020 at 6:59 am

    Thanks for this! I love how you pointed out that you shouldn’t rush yourself. I’ve found that doing things at a comfortable pace results in much higher quality work and it’s a lot healthier in the long run.

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 8, 2020 at 9:45 am

      It’s a great way to prevent burn out of getting overwhelmed

  • Reply Kate June 8, 2020 at 6:45 pm

    I just found out today that I’ll be going back to work next week, so reading this came at a perfect time for me! Thanks for the helpful tips – monitoring my inner dialogue is something I have to keep reminding myself to do, so it helps to have external reminders like your post!

  • Reply Love, Em June 9, 2020 at 12:41 pm

    These are really helpful tips. I go back to work on July 6th and I commute on the train. I am very nervous about this, not looking forward to it one bit. It is a shame I can’t talk to my boss about alternatives as there aren’t any. These are good suggestions, I think it is important to do things you’re comfortable with and listen to local advice!

    Em x

    https://www.loveemblog.com

    • Reply Jodie Paterson June 9, 2020 at 12:49 pm

      Thank you. I am sorry there are no alternatives for you. I would have to get the bus to go back to work so relate to this a lot! I guess all you can do is try your hardest to stay safe by wearing a mask etc.

  • Reply The Twenty Percent June 17, 2020 at 4:41 pm

    All really great tips, I’ll definitely be using them. I think I’m lucky that I normally work predominantly from home anyway!

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