Be Kind To Your Mind - COVID-19 Guide: Part 2

Hello!

With the lockdown being announced across the UK, we want to emphasise the importance of looking after your own mental health

This is why we're relaunching our 'Be Kind To Your Mind' campaign, centred around giving you tips and resources for looking after yourself during these next few weeks.

Please make sure that you are keeping up to date with the latest NHS and Government advice, alongside the University's updates on the situation. 

Part 2 includes tips on Mindfulness, giving back and learning new skills! We hope you find it useful and send us any ideas you have for spending your time indoors. If you missed Part 1, you can find it here - with tips about connecting with others and staying active whilst inside. 

Looking after your mental health during the COVID-19 outbreak
Infectious disease outbreaks, like the current Coronavirus (Covid 19), can be scary and can affect our mental health. While it is important to stay informed, there are also many things we can do to support and manage our wellbeing during such times. They have some tips to help you/those you know.

Mind Self-Care Guide

This page includes information about coronavirus (COVID-19) and your mental wellbeing. It includes information to help you cope if you’re feeling anxious or worried, you’re staying at home or avoiding public places as part of social distancing, or you have to self-isolate. 

Shout (24/7 text service for anyone in crisis)

Shout is a 24/7 UK crisis text service available for times when people feel they need immediate support. By texting ‘SHOUT’ to ‘85258’ a Texter will be put in touch with a trained Crisis Volunteer (CV) who will chat to them using trained techniques via text. The service is designed to help individuals to think more clearly and to take their next steps to feeling better.

Headspace App

Headspace is an app that teaches you how to meditate. You can access the basic version for free or the premium version free with Spotify Premium or by paying a subscription fee. There is now an additional free section called 'Weathering the Storm' which will be available for the next few months.

Big White Wall

Big White Wall is an online community for people who are stressed, anxious or feeling low. The service has an active forum with round-the-clock support from trained professionals. You can talk anonymously to other members and take part in group or one-to-one therapy with therapists. Big White Wall is open to all QMUL staff and students to use. 

Insight Timer App

A free app offering 35,000 guided meditations, the largest free library of its kind, to help with sleep, anxiety and stress. The meditations include a variety of different techniques, each one aimed at relaxing and putting your mind at east. Click here to explore their library. 

ASMR

ASMR, which stands for autonomous sensory meridian response, describes a relaxing tingling sensation that typically begins on the scalp and moves down the back of the neck and upper spine that can happen when someone listens to certain sounds.You can find ASMR videos on audio platforms like YouTube and Spotify

Duolingo

We’ve all downloaded Duolingo to try to become fluent in another language, only to have ignored the reminders to train. Now is the perfect time to pick it back up & learn a new skill! With their free mobile or desktop app, you can learn 30+ languages online with bite-size lessons.

Read outside your subject

We know that whilst completing a degree, it can be all-consuming. So, why not take advantage of this time and read outside of your degree subject to gain some knowledge in other areas of interest. Queen Mary Library has some great online resources for all subjects you can view for free! 

Ivy League Free Courses

Some of the US's most prominent schools have created and shared over 450 online courses, which are all free! You can pick from a number of different courses, ranging from programming to positive psychology. Click here to see the full list available and explore what lies outside of your degree. 

Environmental Careers Webinar

Join us for our Environment & Sustainability careers evening this Thursday to hear from alumni have the opportunity to ask your questions. Session 1: Campaigning and Environmental Law 17:00-18:30 & Session 2: Themes within Renewable Energy 19:00-20:30. Click here for more information. 

Podcasts

They have fast become a staple in people’s lives & nows your chance to expand your horizons. Podcasts are a great, relaxed way of gaining knowledge whilst completing other jobs or tasks. See our list of recommendations to listen to during the lockdown below;

No Such Thing as a Fish Radio 4 In Our Time The Reciepts Podcast
That Peter Crouch Podcast Dear Joan and Jerica Game of our Lives
The High Low Adulting - Oenone Forbat The Guilty Feminist
Off Menu with Ed Gamble & James Acaster The Moth Getting Curious with Jonathan Van Ness
TED Talks Daily Heavyweight S Town
Reveal Serial Happy Place

YouTube

Like podcasts, YouTube has a wealth of videos that are very informative and can help you to learn or refine some of your skills in your free time. We've created a small list of recommendations below, but feel free to suggest anymore you think should be added;

Vsauce Yoga with Adrienne The Sorry Girls
Joe Wicks Pro Home Cooks Tasty
Smarter Every Day TED-Ed Easy Language


General Advice

Please do remember though that you should always follow the most up-to-date information provided by Public Health England and the government. Prioritising safety is always the most important thing, so please do consider this with any activity you take part in.

East London Cares

They are currently running an emergency match-funded appeal to help older members of the community stay connected. You can donate to the appeal here and also email members of their team with poems/drawings/letters to send to older neighbours, click here to email them.

Donate whilst you shop

We know that you may now be doing much of your shopping online now, but you can still give back! Log onto smile.amazon whilst you shop and Amazon will donate 0.5% of the net purchase to a charity of your choice! You can give back whilst you are getting your essentials. 

Donate to a foodbank

Foodbanks are currently running low on supplies, can you spare some goods or toiletries? We have found a list of foodbanks in the central/east London areas that you can donate for, check out their websites to find out the types of items they are accepting and when you can drop them off. 

Online Volunteering

There are loads of ways you can get involved with volunteering from the comfort of your own home. These are just a few suggestions for you: Zooniverse, Be My Eyes, Instant Wild, Missing Maps and Freerice. To see more information about how you get can involved, click here. 

Sign a petition

There are many ways that you can support people who need it at this time with just a few clicks! It is really easy to sign a petition & you can find a list of petitions on the government website. You could even take it further and write a letter to your local MP about an issue that matters to you. 

If you have any further ideas what people can get up to during the lockdown, email them to us at su-studentsunion@qmul.ac.uk