It’s Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK, and we want to check in with you
Being a researcher can be mentally challenging even in the best of times. And we’re certainly not in the best of times at the moment.
We just want to see how you’re doing, and we’d like to start a conversation about the methods you’ve used to help you manage stress and anxiety. Hopefully we can learn from each other, and we’d love to chat about anything you’re comfortable sharing with us.
- How are you feeling? (we’d really like to know)
- How have you found navigating the turbulence caused by the pandemic?
- What methods have you used to manage your mental health?
I’ll go first:
- I’ve been feeling much better lately since things started opening up again in the UK. But the start of the pandemic was very difficult. Everything we’d taken for granted, from seeing friends to hugs, was taken away in the blink of an eye. I found myself anxious and unable to sleep.
- The lack of physical distinction between work and home made it much harder to ‘switch off’. Managing my mental health became much easier once I started running and meditating. I designated rest periods and rest days, and adhered to them semi-religiously. As a result, my energy levels improved overall, and burnout was easier to handle.
- But, the journey never ends! Mental health is something that must be managed on an ongoing basis, so I’m still working on it
If you’re struggling with anything at all, hopefully these resources will be able to help in some way:
- Headspace/meditation really helped me get perspective, and reduce anxiety
- Mind is an excellent mental health charity
- Samaritans run a free hotline 24/7 at 116 123 if you ever need them.
- The NHS has a great resource hub which will direct you towards more local help
- VeryWellMind has a comprehensive list of organisations/initiatives in the US
- Inclusive Therapists helps you find someone to talk to