Lockdowns are tough for everyone, especially those of us in eating disorder recovery, for whom it may be even more challenging. In this blog post, we are providing some tips for getting through lockdown. Remember to stay strong and look after yourselves during this time.
- Avoid looking at the news
If you’re anything like me, constantly looking at the not-so-great news can be pretty anxiety-inducing. Try to avoid looking at the news and having pandemic-related content pop up on your social media feeds. Unfollow news accounts and perhaps get a friend or relative to tell you any really important details you need to know so you don’t have to look at the news.
- Adjust your expectations
The word ‘unprecedented’ has been thrown around a lot during the pandemic and rightly so! These times are bizarre and difficult, so it’s important to adjust your expectations that you have for yourself. If you’re a perfectionist like me and are having a hard time, try to reframe work or tasks as ‘good enough’. Your mental capacity and productivity might not be what it usually is right now and that’s perfectly ok.
- Do things you enjoy!
Cultivating positive emotions is super important during challenging times. Try to engage in fun activities everyday like watching TV/movies, playing boardgames, dancing, listening to music etc. Personally, I find this one of the best ways to stay optimistic and distract myself from bad things that are out of my control.
- Practice self-care
Contrary to what social media sometimes suggests, self-care doesn’t have to involve a face mask and a bubble bath! Keep it super basic and practice self-care simply by eating enough (stick to your meal plan if you have one), hydrating, taking a shower, getting enough sleep, and moving your body if you feel like it or are able to.
- Maintain social connections
It can be easy to become isolated in lockdown, but it’s really important to keep those relationships alive! Whilst online forms of social connection may not be as good as seeing people IRL, try to make the most of the range of platforms and online activities out there – phone calls, FaceTime, Netflix watch parties, online games etc.
- Keep a rough daily schedule
Maintaining a rough daily schedule can be helpful when you’re in lockdown to prevent your routine from going completely out of whack! It also helps to provide some form of stability and predictability amongst the often-chaotic world outside.
- Reach out to support if you’re struggling
Reach out to professional support if you need to. For example, the Butterfly Foundation’s helpline is open 8am – midnight (AEST), 7 days a week. You can call 1800 ED HOPE, send them an email or chat online.
Written by Sophie Smith
Eating disorders advocate and lived experience advisor
@SophieClare1103 on Instagram and Twitter