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Hi! I'm Laura, a 23-year-old millennial girl discovering who I am by sharing my life experiences on my blog. You'll find me writing about me discovering my personal style, my growing wanderlust or giving any sort of style, uni or mental health advice.

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The world is in a bit of a weird place at the moment. We all know it, we all talk about it all the time. I have felt more anxious than normal these past few weeks because of everything that is happening. If you too have felt anxious, I just want to first of say that you have every right to feel like that. You are allowed to feel anxious and should not feel ashamed for feeling it. Obviously I am not a professional, but I feel like I have learnt some tips along these past three weeks that have made it easier for me to deal with my anxiety in these uncertain times. I feel like I have got my anxiety a bit more under control now, but are already three or four weeks into this – I have honestly lost count.

Stick with your routine

If there’s one thing I have learnt from these past weeks as well as from working from home in general, is the importance of having a routine and sticking to it. I am obviously lucky enough to be working from home, so not much has changed for me. But if you are used to working in an office, this change of working from home might be more difficult. I think it’s really good to try and stick to some kind of a ‘normal’ kind of workday routine throughout the week. Keep your weekends for whatever you want to do or not do. Sleep in until 1 during the weekends, but ensuring you have that scheduled routine throughout the week will give you a bit more stability. Not only do I feel like it helps you be productive, I think sticking to your routine also helps you feel less anxious. You know what to expect when you tick off your morning routine and your work routine. Structure is really good if your mind is not really there, so one of the first things I always try to do when I am feeling anxious or overwhelmed is to bring back my structure in life.

Find distractions

Obviously there is a lot of news pushed onto our social feeds, phones and TV’s. While it’s great to have the news available for you to consume at every hour of the day, it can also fuel anxious or overwhelmed thoughts. It can make you start to overthink and overanalyse every single thing, which only makes the anxiety worse. It’s why I stopped watching the news and checking my news apps every single hour. I have tried to find distractions instead. At the moment I find that if I am checking my phone I am most likely to open Instagram, Pinterest or TikTok for some entertainment. If I finish my workday and am feeling a bit overwhelmed by the news, I would actually go to turn on Netflix or any other streaming service on instead. I find that watching films and series on there really helps me bring some light back into my day. I still try to not binge on a series in an entire evening so usually turn off at around 10 and then read a book for another hour before actually falling asleep.

A distraction I have found quite interesting to do is actually cleaning and getting lots of chores done. A few weeks ago I told you I am actually working on redoing another room in my parents house to transform it into my ‘office/blogging space’. My dad and I have found lots of distraction in painting that room, well mostly my dad I must say. But I have found that clearing out the stuff in that room has also really helped me clear my head a bit.

Contact your friends

One of the things I am struggling most with at the moment is not seeing my friends. I honestly could not have imagined how hard I am finding it not being able to see my friends. I am quite the introvert, but love to hang out with the close knit of people I have built around me. I find that calling them like that or on FaceTime them really helps me get through my days too. Just a little catch up on what we have been up to, how we are holding on. Having a little catch up with some wine in the evenings sometimes too. It’s just one of those things that gives me a bit of a feeling of normality in this all.
If you are however also like me and are scared to ask your friends if it’s OK to FaceTime them, then try to send them a little text WhatsApp message. My cousin and I used to see each other pretty much every Friday and we have not been able to do so since February. It was hard as we both miss not seeing each other. So we had a little catch up on FaceTime after she told me to get off my high horse and just give into admitting I miss her. It really helped me though, as we both got to talk. It was a great distraction for me, but it was just nice in general to get to speak with her.

Try some exercise or stretching

I have to admit that I did not feel up to doing any form of exercise up until last week. Last week was when I finally felt motivated enough to go out for a really long walk for some exercise. And once I got back into walking, I noticed how much more calm I felt. I felt lighter, my mind felt clearer and I felt like I finally had some newfound creativity. The day after I actually felt so refreshed I went on another little walking trip to get some groceries and stretched my body afterwards. It’s definitely hard adjusting to life when you’re on lockdown and only allowed to do those things necessary, especially if you hate working out in general. A lot of my routine went out of the window like that, as I mostly spend my exercise time in the gym. But by giving myself a slow start by going for a little walk first and then introducing a longer walk has really made me feel slightly more motivated to do some more exercises at home. It’s very low-key though, I am not pushing myself as hard core as I normally would when I am at the gym. I also try to do some stretches every day or every other day, as I have really noticed how stiff I have become from being behind my desk all day. So if exercise is still a bit too far ahead for you, try to do some stretches instead. They will also have an impact on your mood.

Plan in your down time

One of the things I have noticed is that it’s easy to throw yourself into work with everything that is going on. But this actually can contribute to your anxiety as it adds to your workload. It’s why I have decided to end my workdays at 5 and then just spent the rest of the day doing things I want to do. Some days I might actually plan a little hour throughout my day too to make sure I have some time to read or do something I like throughout my day too, which I have noticed also really helps me calm my anxiety. The most important thing is to do things that make me feel happy and relaxed during that scheduled down time.