By Jeremy Godwin.
Hello and welcome to a special COVID-19 issue of Mental Health Talk.
Given everything that’s going on in the world at the moment, I’m guessing that I’m not the only one who is having to be super-vigilant with looking after my mental health and wellbeing. With that in mind, I decided to devote this week’s issue to the current crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic so we can all find some sanity amongst the insanity. This week I’m sharing articles about COVID-19 mental health considerations, coping with crisis-related anxiety, mental health whilst in self-isolation, dealing with financial stress caused by the crisis, and more. So, let’s talk!
This week’s Episode of Let’s Talk About Mental Health…
This week’s episode/post of Let’s Talk About Mental Health is Let’s Talk About… Resilience. It’s all about what resilience is, how it affects your mental health, and how to build your resilience in order to help you deal with setbacks and challenges. Read here or listen below:
If you enjoy the podcast, please share it with anyone you know who may find it useful and engaging. Also, if you could take a moment to click on the ‘follow’ button (like the one in the player above) that would be much appreciated, because the more followers my podcast gets the easier it is to help other new listeners find it (search engines only seem to be interested in stuff that other people are interested in!). Thanks 🙂
Articles of the Week…
COVID-19: Mental health in the age of coronavirus (UN News, 16 March 2020): Straightforward guidance from the United Nations about mental health during these challenging times. Read it here.
Mental Health and Psychosocial Considerations During COVID-19 Outbreak (World Health Organisation, 12 March 2020): A very comprehensive guide from the World Health Organisation with a variety of considerations (note that much of this is designed for the media to ensure factual reporting, however it is useful for everyone). Read it here.
How to cope with financial stress and anxiety during the coronavirus pandemic (CNBC, 16 March 2020): This article gives some advice on coping with financial stress during this time, something I will be talking about a bit further in the next episode of the podcast to be released on Monday 20 March. Read it here.
Coping with coronavirus anxiety (Harvard Health Blog, 12 March 2020): I make a point of relying on trustworthy sources of information that are peer-reviewed and/or rely on the scientific method – and Harvard have an excellent reputation for quality academic work. This blog post by John Sharp, MD, offers simple and practical advice for dealing with coronavirus anxiety. Read it here.
Coronavirus is stressful. Here are some ways to cope with the anxiety (The Conversation, 13 March 2020): More practical advice on dealing with coronavirus anxiety (I’m not meaning to add to anyone’s anxiety here, but these articles really do have useful suggestions). Read it here.
If coronavirus scares you, read this to take control over your health anxiety (The Guardian, 16 March 2020): More advice on managing anxiety – because knowledge is power. Read it here.
How to look after your mental health when you are self-isolating (Metro UK, 16 March 2020): It’s one thing dealing with the day-to-day impacts of coronavirus anxiety, but many are now in isolation and so are struggling with issues like lack of social support. This article explores healthy coping strategies. Read it here.
The family lockdown guide: how to emotionally prepare for coronavirus quarantine (The Guardian, 13 March 2020): A guide for families to survive self-isolation. Parents: I salute you in these trying times, and I’m sure rainy-day boredom will never look as bad ever again! Read it here.
Coronavirus COVID-19: How to look after your mental health when working from home (ABC Life, 18 March 2020): With many people now working from home, managing mental health becomes a huge focus for many due to the sudden disappearance of regular routines and social contact (hey, by the end of this you’re probably even going to end up missing that person in the office you normally cannot stand to be around). Simple advice for looking after your mental health while you work from home (and also there are lots of articles around about making the most of working from home, so jump on Google and do some research if you’re after ideas). Read it here.
TED Talk of the Week…
Breaking the Loop of Anxiety (Colin Bien, TEDxLeuphanaUniversityLüneburg, 2017): No single quick fix here (sorry!), but instead a timely discussion of how multiple actions have a cumulative effect on breaking the pattern of anxiety. Running time: 16 minutes 31 seconds. Watch it here or in the player below.
Favourite Instagram Post of the Week…
Quote of the Week…
To finish up here’s a quote I absolutely love this week – take a few moments to consider what it means to you in the context of your mental health and wellbeing:
“Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.“Seneca the Younger
Next Week on Let’s Talk About Mental Health…
Next week’s podcast topic will be Let’s Talk About… Panic. I debated for a while over how and even if I should approach the subject of coronavirus, but it’s clearly having an impact on people individually and collectively so I think it’s important to tackle the subject because it’s not the first time this kind of group panic has happened and it certainly won’t be the last! It’s the reason for the focus on COVID-19 in this week’s newsletter and it’s the reason why next week’s podcast episode will explore the subject of panic and mental health broadly. I’ll be talking about why panic happens (both individually and collectively) and how to handle it for the sake of your mental health and wellbeing.
Podcast and transcript/article available Monday morning (Australian time; Sunday evening in the UK & Ireland and Sunday afternoon in the US & Canada) – find the next episode and all past episodes here (where you can also subscribe to have it land in your inbox each week). Podcast available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and others (see my Podcast page for links) as well as an audio-only version on YouTube. And if you like the program, please leave a five-star review on your preferred platform and tell your friends/family/etc!
Random cat photo/Meme of the week…
BONUS: CORONAVIRUS MemeS of the week…
If there was ever a time where laughter was necessary, it’s now! With that in mind, here are a few memes that made me laugh this week (not making light of the pandemic, but we all need a laugh every now and then)…
Coaching services available…
Before I sign off today: I talk a fair bit in the podcast about the importance of talking to someone, and if you are looking to work with someone I offer coaching services via video conference anywhere in the world – have a look at www.letstalkaboutmentalhealth.com.au/coaching for more information and rates. (And I totally understand that now might not be the best time for everyone financially, but it’s something to think of for the future when the world is a little less frazzled…)
Until Next Time…
Thanks for reading! If you liked this newsletter and you haven’t already subscribed to Let’s Talk About Mental Health, please do so at the Subscribe page on the website.
If you have any ideas for what you’d like to see/hear/read more of on Let’s Talk About Mental Health or in this Mental Health Talk newsletter, you can get in touch with me via social media using the links below.
Have a brilliant week, take care of yourself and remember: be kind to others because you never know what their struggles are, and what you put out into the world comes back to you (and I promise you that’s not meant to be a coronavirus pun)!
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LET’S TALK ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH.
BECAUSE THE MORE WE TALK ABOUT IT, THE EASIER IT GETS.
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© 2020 Jeremy Godwin