Recharging your mental health during COVID-19

With COVID-19 restrictions disrupting the daily lives of many Victorians, psychiatrist and neuroscientist, Professor Ashley Bush from The Florey says it’s there’s never been a better time to prioritise mental health and wellbeing.

“Our brains have a remarkable ability to adapt to situations with our fight or flight response but activated repeatedly over time can lead to adverse health outcomes,” says Professor Bush.

“Maintaining a healthy routine can assist with managing and maintaining mental health during this time.”

Professor Bush’s top tips include:

  • Regular exercise. Try to exercise for at least 200 minutes a week. Exercise in whatever way suits your lifestyle best, it could be yoga with the kids or going for a walk outside.
  • Moderation. During quarantine, it can be tempting to overindulge but moderate your intake by eating healthy and drinking less alcohol.
  • Stay engaged. Being mentally active is as important as being physically active. Give yourself projects big or small like redecorating, learning a new skill or doing a jigsaw puzzle.
  • Stay connected. Stay engaged with loved ones, friends, and families over the phone and electronically.
  • Take time for yourself. It is important to allocate some time in the day to do something for yourself to recharge, it could be something small like listening to good music.