We are still offering counselling sessions via telephone and Zoom. If you would like to explore this further please get in touch or fill the form below. We will be updating and adding resources here, so do keep visiting our website or our app regularly

 

Here at Release, we are focused on ways to support your wellbeing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mind – Body – Spirit – you will find something on our website to support each of these areas.

There may be things that you enjoy doing already to help your mental wellbeing, or maybe you are looking for ideas for something different or new.  We’ve listed a few suggestions in our general wellbeing advice section below, but this is by no means an exhaustive list.

Exercise:

Whether it’s 10 minutes or an hour, exercise is fundamental to our physical and mental wellbeing.

Mindfulness:

This is a really positive way to manage stress and anxiety. If you are interested in finding out more about what mindfulness is, Gelong Thubten, explains this really clearly. Click here!

  • Free Meditation App:  Insight Timer (available on Apple or Android)

Other ideas:

  • Start watching a new box set or film you haven’t seen before.
  • Keep a journal.
  • Don’t forget to go for your daily walk. Being outside really helps. OS maps and route planning are available as a free app – so you can always try somewhere different.
  • Offer to help someone else who is unable to get out whether that be shopping or a chat.
  • Find different ways to connect with people. Have a virtual coffee and chat with a friend, or watch the same film or TV programme. Make a time to do this, rather than having an informal arrangement.
  • Download games you can play with others remotely, try Poki.
  • Be aware of community groups on Facebook and other social networking sites locally and nationally that you may want to join.
  • Learn a new skill online, such as a new language via Duolingo.
  • Take up a new hobby, craft or skill.
  • Quiz nights are available free online- virtual pub quiz every Thursday evening on YouTube.
  • Try cooking something new, including baking your own bread or make pasta.

Action for happiness have some great resources on their website. This also includes a mindfulness calendar, which is free to download.

How To Respond Effectively To The Corona Crisis

Coronavirus and your mental health 

If you’re finding things hard emotionally right now, you’re not alone. We have expert advice and practical tips to help you look after your mental health and wellbeing

Anxiety describes feelings of worry, fear and unease. The intensity of these feelings will differ from person to person, but will often be experienced physically as well as emotionally.

Physically you may notice:

Rapid and/or irregular heartbeat, faster breathing, sweating, nausea, dizziness, trouble sleeping, feeling irritable, lack of concentration or experiencing panic attacks

Emotionally, you might find that you are thinking about things more, ruminating, unable to go about your day-to-day life in the way that you would like to.

You may well notice that you are feeling more anxious at the moment. Given the pandemic, many, many people will be feeling more anxious all, or some of the time.

There are ways to help manage your anxiety during this time. Read them here.

Through the COVID-19 pandemic, many, many people are going to be affected by the impact of someone passing away. This may or may not be related to COVID-19.

Individuals, families, cultures, religious beliefs or none, when someone close to you dies, there are certain rituals that are part of your process of mourning. In these times of Coronavirus, many of the rituals we would associate in the first few weeks when someone has died are not currently possible, and this makes managing grief at this time more difficult.

It may help to know how grief will impact on you. Grief is a natural reaction when someone has died. You may experience a range of rawness of emotions that you haven’t felt before, or that you weren’t expecting. At times these may feel overwhelming and unbearable.

These may include:

  •  Shock – that the person has died, that you didn’t get to see them before they died and the speed of the virus.
  • Numbness and disbelief, the sense that it doesn’t feel real.
  • Anger – with what’s happened, sometimes with those around you.
  • Sadness – and emptiness
  • Guilt – there may have been things you didn’t get to say, you weren’t able to be with the person when they died.
  • Loneliness and longing – this may feel even more intense given the situation with lockdown
  • Meaninglessness – what meaning does life hold and questioning this

Physically you may notice:

  • Your sleep is affected, getting to sleep or staying asleep
  • You may notice your dreams are more vivid
  • A change in appetite
  • More aches and pains in your body. You may notice you feel more anxious or panicky
  • It’s much harder to concentrate or remember things

However, it’s also important to remember this isn’t the same for everyone. We grieve differently, in different ways. Grief is draining both physically and emotionally and day to day life often feels much harder.

Read our full article here on bereavement support.

What is depression?

Depression or feeling depressed is a phrase you may hear quite a lot, maybe more so at the moment. You might experience times when you feel upset or low in mood. Such feelings are understandable when you must deal with a lot of things at once. These feelings are part of a normal reaction to loss or stressful events and should resolve in time. The ability to deal with these feelings is often made easier by talking to someone close to you about how you are feeling.

However, for some, low mood can become more severe and difficult to shake off. When low mood persists in this way, it is referred to as ‘clinical depression’. It is a common problem, it is estimated that as many as 1 in 6 will experience depression at some point in their lives.

People’s experience of depression varies, and with it the extent to which they experience it. Not everyone experiences all these symptoms or with the same severity.

Below are some of the common signs and symptoms you may experience if you are depressed:

Emotions or feelings

• Feeling sad, numb, guilty, upset, hopeless or angry
• Crying a lot, or feeling unable to cry
• Anxiety and fear
• Loss of interest and enjoyment
• Feeling alone, becoming isolated and withdrawn
• Physical and bodily signs
• Tiredness or exhaustion
• Restlessness
• Changes in sleep – waking early or interrupted sleep
• Changes to appetite, eating and weight
• Poor memory and concentration
• Worsening of chronic conditions

Thoughts

• Having upsetting and gloomy thoughts, generally expecting the worst
• Thinking that everything is hopeless
• Losing confidence in yourself
• Difficulty in making decisions
• Thoughts of death and suicide
• Changes in behaviour
• Finding it difficult to be with people
• Reduced activities
• Self neglect

During the pandemic we know more people are experiencing domestic abuse, violence and coercive control during this time. If this applies to you or you are worried about someone please call one of the specialist services detailed below for further advice.

The Government website states:

The household isolation instruction as a result of COVID-19 does not apply if you need to leave your home to escape domestic abuse.

Read our full guidance & safety tips regarding domestic abuse during COVID-19

If you would like to talk to someone about your own or a loved one’s drinking or drug use, you can access free and confidential advice, with options available online or over the phone.

Kingston Wellbeing Service
Drug and alcohol support services for adults including support for families/carers.
Opening hours: Monday – Friday 9:30am – 5:00pm
Please contact the service by telephone or email: 020 3317 7900 or cim-tr.kws.drug.alcohol@nhs.net

The service aims to deliver:
· Information, advice and support over the telephone or online.
· Initial assessment over the telephone.
· Ongoing support for those who are currently receiving treatment including prescribing interventions, one to one support, advice and information over the telephone or online.
· Joint working with other agencies in Kingston.

Kingston Recovery Hub
Support for people in recovery from drug and alcohol issues. Recovery Hub activities are currently suspended but the service can be accessed by phone or email for information, advice and support.
Opening hours: Monday – Friday 9:00am – 4:00pm.
Please contact the Hub Coordinator by telephone or email: 07795 382068 or mick.gallagher@kaleidoscopeproject.org.uk

National organisations/support

  • Talk to Frank  or Frank drugs helpline – 0300 123 6600
  • Lots of resources on Adfam. It has a comprehensive list of organisations for those looking for support with drug and alcohol issues.
  • Narcotics Anonymous or helpline 0300 999 1212 and online meetings are available.

If you would like someone to chat to:

  • Samaritans 116 123 or email  jo@samaritans.org
  • Silverline (if you are over 55) Or call The Silverline Helpline – 0800 4 70 80 90 Available 24 hours a day 365 days a year
  • Anxiety UK
  • CALM –Men only service, call them on 0808 802 5858
  • Shout – which is a textbase service, open 24/7. Simply text 85258

or you can book an online session with us

Release Office Opening Times:
9.00am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday: Telephone: 0208 339 7310   or Email: team.release@ymcaspg.org

or alternatively fill out this form below and we will contact you.