4 FREE self help resources – Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing

Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing - 4 FREE self help resources
Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing

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We are all living in such uncertain and worrying times right now. So many things are causing us stress and anxiety on top of the Coronavirus itself. Work, money, food, health, children, staying home, the list seems endless. Any one of these can magnify underlying anxieties we may have.

Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing - anxiety
Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing – anxiety

Now, perhaps more than ever, we need to be taking care of our mental wellbeing as well as our physical wellbeing. Recently I wrote about what simple steps you can take to stay healthy in body. I have put together some free resources to stay mentally healthy.

Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing - don't panic
Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing – don’t panic

1 – Mind Cards – FREE download

I’m very pleased to have teamed up with LSW London to bring you their Mind Cards. If you haven’t heard of them, they provide products to promote wellbeing and mindfulness. Lili, the founder, realised that it isn’t the big grand gestures that make us happy. It is the small things which build up over time to give us that meaningful, lasting happiness. She has devised Mind Cards which prompt you to do one simple thing each day to build on your happiness. You can purchase single packs from as little as £2.99 or a whole set for £14.99. Additionally, just for you, I’ve got a gift of a FREE relaxation download, normally £2.99, with promo code FREELAXATION for this week only. Click here to redeem your freebie and take a look around Lili’s shop.

The relaxation download session is only just over 5 minutes long, short enough to slot into a busy day. The first time I tried it I fell into a state of deep relaxation very quickly. I was then able to clear my mind and focus for the rest of the day. It’s like a verbal guide to your mental happy place. A great way to start your journey into mindfulness. Highly recommended.

Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing - happy place
Coronavirus and your mental wellbeing – happy place

2 – Headspace – FREE content

I have used the Headspace app for some years. They have tons of meditation and mindfulness resources and some free introductory courses too. If you have never meditated before, this is a great place to start. They have released a FREE pack to help get through the current global crisis. It is called Weathering the Storm. Usually you subscribe to access all of their content and this is a brilliant freebie from them.

Andy Puddicombe, one of the founders of Headspace, voices a lot of the courses and has the most relaxing and soothing voice. It’s hard for me not to fall asleep when listening to him. Although my initial reason for starting with Headspace was to sleep better, they have packages for all sorts of situations. Sleeping is one of them of course, they also have packages for calming meditations, stressful situations, SOS sessions and much more. I have a link for you to get 14 days full free access. Down load via the App Store or Play store. You can access the free pack via the app and some of the content on the website. Highly Recommended.

Explore Headspace
Explore Headspace

3 – Calm – FREE content

CALM is another meditation resource which has been around for years. They have offered a free pack with Soothing Meditations, a Calm Masterclass and Calm Kids resources. You can access their FREE content here. Read all the way to the bottom of the page as they have 40% off your first year of premium membership right now, if you want to sign up for more.

Calm
Calm

4 – NHS website – extensive FREE resources

Last but by no means least, is our wonderful NHS and their Every Mind Matters campaign. The website is chock full of resources. Firstly there is guidance for your wellbeing whilst having to stay at home. Secondly they have a list of 10 simple ways to deal with the anxiety of Coronavirus. Not only that, in the Apps tab there are plenty more things for your general health such as the Couch to 5k app, Easy meals and Active 10 apps. All are available in the App store and Play store.

NHS logo
NHS logo

Without question, the main thing to remember in all of this is:

STAY AT HOME, PROTECT THE NHS, SAVE LIVES

Stay safe and much love x

Yoga – an introduction

Like many, I thought yoga was just a load of silly poses.

I did not know how wrong I was until I tried it. Last year I attended my very first yoga class. Previously, I had bought a second hand DVD from eBay. However after a couple of weeks the novelty wore off and so did the motivation. The DVD sat gathering dust and ended up being donated to charity.

I’m not really sure what made me go to a class, but I will say this. I felt absolutely AMAZING afterwards.

For me, paying for a class is far more motivating than staying at home and finding a reason not to do it. Some of you may not be able to stretch to paid classes, or prefer the privacy of home. You can find many instructional videos on YouTube like this one which I really liked.

What’s yoga got to do with it?

You may ask, what has this got to do with gardening? Well, you would be right, there isn’t a direct correlation. However, I found this, along with gardening, to play a major part of improving my overall well being. It has so many benefits, it will warrant another post about it soon.

As a sufferer of anxiety, part of my own self help was to try things and see if they worked for me. I can say that for me, yoga was an unexpected find. I don’t feel like I am exercising (and I hate exercising), and I feel so relaxed yet energised afterwards.

My teacher is brilliant, never pushes you to do more than your own limits. She always gives you options depending on your ability, flexibility, or if you have any illnesses or injury. I found this most refreshing, and actually makes we want to try those difficult poses even more.

So, have you found something that helps to alleviate stress, anxiety or depression? Has yoga done this for you?

Take care of yourself. Namaste.

Feeling meh….

It’s inevitable, the good spirits wear off. Usually when the weather is overcast, dark and miserable, like today.

When I feel less than great, I try and remember to do three things:

-something I need to do

-something I have to do

-something I want to do

Feeling meh

Need

Things you need to do are things that, when not done, have negative consequences. Such as not paying a bill for instance. Today, my “need to do” was sending my proof of no claims bonus to my new car insurance company. The consequences of not doing this would be an increased premium. None of us want to pay more for insurance than we should!

I felt a bit better having done that, knowing it is off my “to-do” list, and one less worry on my mind.

Have

Have to do things are the daily chores of life. For example doing the laundry, or washing up. Or maybe even making tomorrows lunches. The sort of things that keep life running a bit more smoothly. My “have to do” today was to put away some clean clothes and put another load of washing in the machine. I know now that there wont be a backlog of clean clothes followed by a backlog of dirty ones! And the bedroom looks tidier, that’s a bonus!

Want

I think this is fairly self-explanatory. Do something every day that you enjoy, you want to do. Watching a film or your favourite TV programme, an hour in the garden, weather permitting, are some examples. Whatever makes you feel good, lifts your spirits, it is all good.

From personal experience, I know how hard it can be to lift yourself out of the fog and into the light. So even on the darkest days both mentally and meteorologically, just three things can made the difference.

My “want to do” today is watching the snooker on the TV, while painting around the fireplace. I find painting quite therapeutic and love snooker, so that works well for me.

What three things can you do today?

Garden update Monday 14 January

A knock on the door rudely awoke me early this morning. It was a delivery, I was confused. I had no idea what it could be, had I been sleep shopping?

Luckily, sleep shopping it was not. It turned out to be a bulk delivery of bird food. I had bought 25 kilos of sunflower hearts, 150 net free fat balls and 3 kilos of meal worm flavour suet pellets, yum!

Later in the morning, the delivery was taken down to my little shed, where all my bird food supplies are kept. Then, I realised just how pleasant it was outside today, a balmy 9 Centigrade (48 Fahrenheit in old money).

When suddenly, out of the corner of my eye, I see a little glint of orange in the pale winter sun. What on earth could be so bright at this time of the year? Well, it was this:

A beautiful, perfect calendula, in January! What a delight nature is sometimes.

And so to the jobs

Back to the real reason for the post, a garden update. Not a lot to report, however the onions and garlic are still growing well. Slow growth would be the norm, but they are well on their way. The mild winter, so far, has helped. I am growing white onions and soft neck garlic, autumn plantings for both.

rhdr

I’ve had to put a piece of old fencing over the raised bed to stop the local cats and other wildlife using the bed for a toilet/digging patch. I used just a few clothes pegs and sticks to keep it in place.

It was so nice, just for a few minutes, to feel the sun on my face. I also tidied up some pots, removing all the dead foliage. It is amazing how doing just a few minutes on a small project can made you feel better.

How do you find little lifts in your day?