The impact of the global Covid-19 pandemic has affected people of all ages personally, professionally and educationally to varying degrees. Many people have struggled with their health, bereavement, loss of livelihoods and/ or income, having to juggle home education, exams being cancelled, loneliness and isolation. For many of us, not being to access our usual support structures and activities in the form of seeing family, friends and members of the community has impacted on our resilience and sense of feeling able to cope.
Some young people have thrived with lockdown and independent online learning as it has reduced social expectations and pressure and allowed them to study and learn at their own pace. For others however, reduced social contact especially with friends, staying motivated and active have been a big challenge and led to an increase in feelings of sadness, anxiety and frustration.
Often in the past a summer break is an opportunity to have a change of scenery, visit new places and engage in different activities outside of our usual routines. With Covid-19 the range of opportunities for this have been greatly reduced. It is therefore important to think creatively about other ways to promote positive mental health and build resilience.
The Anna Freud National Centre for Children and Families have launched a #selfcare summer campaign aimed at thinking about what individuals can do to promote their own emotional well-being whilst having fun. They have designed two free booklets (see links below) for primary and secondary school aged young people.
In addition to the fantastic ideas in these booklets I would encourage getting outside as much as possible. We are fortunate that in and around Ruislip, Northwood, Harrow, Watford etc we have many beautiful parks and green open spaces that can be safely visited. These can provide a great area to play some sport or try some quiet time such as connecting with nature by focusing on your senses and what you can see, hear, smell, taste and feel. Developing an insight into how we might be feeling both physically and emotionally using simple strategies such as these are an important starting point for good mental health.
If you and/or your family are experiencing difficulties and think you might benefit from an intervention that is specifically tailored to meet your individual needs, please feel free to contact me on Tel: 07514 874561 or Email: firstname.lastname@example.org