During unprecedented times it can be challenging to see the positives in life, which is why it is vital now more than ever to evaluate and focus on your mental health and wellbeing. Take this time as an opportunity for reflection and relaxation. There are several ways to remain positive and support your mental health and wellbeing during periods of quarantine or isolation. We've compiled eight ways that might help you gain perspective and remain positive during stressful times.

1. Get outside.

It is amazing how much your perspective can change just by getting out and spending some time outdoors. Why not take some time to get out into the garden, soak up the sun (don’t forget the sunscreen), take in the fresh air, play with your pets or take a stroll around your local park.

2. Embrace downtime.

We're used to being busy, going places and needing to be on time. While we have some extra time and a little more downtime than usual, this could be a great opportunity to reassess your outlook and enjoy quality time with your family. Maybe, dig out an old board game to play, a puzzle to work on, or start a mini cricket game in the backyard.

3. Put down your device.

These items have their place in our lives and are incredibly useful, however, it is also great to take some time out and disconnect from our digital devices. Take time every week to have a digital detox and focus on what’s happening in the moment. 

4. Make a list.

Try to take some time to write a list of things you’re thankful for and make it a visual reminder, so that you can see the list if you’re feeling down. 

5. Have a clean out.

Spend a day clearing out the cupboards and get rid of those unwanted clothes and household items that you keep meaning to dispose of. Lifeline Darling Downs is still accepting donations during the COVID-19 response. Our opening hours and locations for dropping off donations can be found here: https://www.lifelinedarlingdowns.org.au/news/donations-welcome-during-covid-19-response.

6. Make a mess in the kitchen.

Now is a great time to get into or get back into the kitchen. You could make your favourite meal or learn to cook or bake something new. Cooking and baking can be a great way to stay busy, learn new skills and relax while you're physically distancing and staying safe.

7. Check-in and check up on others.

We might be physically distancing for the health and safety of the whole community, however, that doesn't stop us from connecting with others. Staying connected to your squad and your broader network is really important for your mental wellbeing and theirs. Why not take some time to check-in and check up on your friends today. Maybe you could organise a virtual coffee date from the comfort of your own home.

8. Stick to a routine.

Maintain healthy routines that can be achieved each day. Do things like brushing your teeth straight after you have breakfast, making your bed and opening all the blinds/curtains in the house. This will bring in the natural light and help get you motivated and ready for the day.

As we know, adaption has been a huge part of our community’s progression during this challenging period. Businesses have worked to develop, trial and implement contact-less forms of purchasing and receiving products for their customers, and individuals have utilised the many avenues of communication such as video conferencing, social media platforms, and phone calls to keep in touch with loved ones that they may not be able to physically visit at the current time.

Here at Lifeline Darling Downs, we have also made some adaptions with some of our services (such as counselling services) now being delivered via phone due to social distancing requirements. It’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed or anxious in this time of uncertainty, so rest assured our team of counsellors is still available and able to support you.

It is important to remember that we are all in this together and know that this won’t last forever. If you have some ideas and tips for keeping a positive mindset during this time, please feel free to get in contact with us and share these points with us. We would love to hear what you’ve been doing!

As always, if you or someone you care for is in need of support you can contact call Lifeline on 13 11 14, or chat to a crisis supporter via text Lifeline on 0477 13 11 14 (6pm – midnight AEDT) or online at lifeline.org.au (7pm – midnight AEDT).