The 18th – 24th May is Mental Health Awareness Week, led by the Mental Health Foundation. At the moment, we are acutely aware that mental well-being is difficult to maintain during lockdown – boredom, loneliness, being away from friends and family, and not having our usual routines plays havoc with our general happiness, and the uncertainty of how long this situation is going to last is really affecting people. Mental health is so important to everyone’s everyday lives, so this blog aims to highlight some of the ideas and campaigns being shared next week alongside some practical tips and activities to integrate into life for now and after lockdown. 

If you are at all worried about your own mental health or that of a loved one, please do contact us for help and advice at any time. Our Mental Health lead is Nicola Bailey, and her contact details are:

– Email:

– Mobile: 07597 366606

BBC: Dr Radha’s five mental health tips for lockdown.

“Dr Radha Modgil from BBC Radio 1’s Life Hacks shares her top five tips on how to stay mentally and emotionally well during the coronavirus lockdown, all beginning with the letter C.

Sticking to a routine, making sure we take care of ourselves, and using our creativity in new ways are all ways she suggests we can ease the psychological toll that staying inside is having on all of us.”

CACHE have released a guidebook on creating mentally healthy environments, with some pretty scary statistics:

  • 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year
  • In England 1 in 6 report experiencing a common mental health problem each week
  • 75% of all education staff have faced physical or mental health issues in the last two years
  • 53% have considered leaving the profession
  • Mental health problems affect 1 in 10 children and young people
  • 70% of those who experience the problems have not had appropriate interventions

Their article on mental health reports “it’s worth noting that although the overall numbers of those suffering from a mental illness hasn’t changed significantly in recent years, statistics show that the way people are coping with mental illness is getting worse, so it’s imperative we raise awareness and open up conversations to remove the stigma around mental illness to encourage understanding.”

Senior Lecturer at the University of Sunderland, Stephen Mordue, has published a series of blogs giving handy tips on managing your mental health through sleep, being organised, nutrition, and exercise. Whilst his blog is aimed at teachers, tips such as the ones below can be helpful for anyone:

  • Aim to get 8 hours of sleep a night
  • Don’t exercise for 2 hours before going to bed
  • Plan time to rest doing something just for you
  • Have a good morning routine that sets you up for the day
  • Eat plenty of omega 3 fatty acids (found in oily fish, soy beans, flaxseed and linseed oil)
  • Exercise regularly – aim for 20 minutes a day to start with

Action for Happiness have a brilliant website including top tips, actions you can take to help, events, and an app, all aiming to make a “happier and kinder world”. Below are 3 resources you may find interesting: a free 10-day online coaching programme for happiness; a free Ten Keys to Happier Living guidebook; and a 30-day Coping Calendar with suggested actions to “look after ourselves and each other as we face this global crisis”. Click on the images below to download.

Puzzles are great for mental health and well-being. Sit somewhere quiet and click on the images below to have a go. The websites they are on have more puzzles to try too.