Online forums

Before you can post or reply in these forums, please complete your profile

Complete your profile

Before you can post or reply in these forums, please join our online community.

Forum membership is open to anyone residing in Australia.

Join the online community Community rules Coping during the Coronavirus outbreak

Forums / Staying well / Coping during the Coronavirus outbreak

Topic: Coping during the Coronavirus outbreak

  1. Sophie_M
    Community Moderator
    • Works for beyondblue moderating these forums
    Sophie_M avatar
    6143 posts
    31 March 2020

    Hi all,

    Thank you so much for joining and contributing to our valued online forums community.

    We know these are challenging times for everyone. That's why we started this particular thread in the first place. It is also why it is vitally important we continue sharing in ways on this thread that are helpful and constructive for our whole community. We want allcomers here to share, discover and hopefully take some comfort in the ways and means by which others are coping during the coronavirus outbreak.

    With that in mind, it may be helpful to frame your contributions to this thread with the following questions in mind:

    What thoughts are helpful for you at the moment?

    What are you doing to remain connected?

    How are you taking care of yourself and others?

    What are you finding helpful in reducing your anxiety during this time?

    If you want to seek support and advice for, or simply air, your particular fears, concerns or frustrations – be they related to the COVID-19 measures or not – then we encourage you to do so by exploring some of our other, more targeted, threads or even start your own.

    We have sections dedicated to particular mental health conditions (anxiety for example), for young people, for those who care for others going through a tough time  and much more. We even have a thread for the sharing of bad jokes on particular days.

    1 person found this helpful
  2. Feeler
    Feeler avatar
    10 posts
    31 March 2020

    Hi All

    This is my first post.

    I haven't been diagnosed with Anxiety or Depression but I am a worrier with ADD so the COVID-19 Pandemic is getting to me badly.

    I've been careful about the credibility and volume of the information I get and that somewhat helps, but even the bits of credible information I get aren't nearly promising enough. I'am so sad that the Virus has happened at all -as obvious as that is- and it's in me to want certainty and hope right now.

    I am fortunate enough to have most of my Family around but the little things get to me. My Mum wiping our home delivered (as usual) shopping with disinfectant wipes (not usual) locals getting out of the way when I go out with my Dad and our Dog, My Sister coughing right on her wrist when some of her tea goes down the wrong way, My Parents mentioning that my Canberra based Brother won't be with us "for the forseeable future" I realise that such measures are responsible but that upsets me in itself.

    The Pandemic feels like a punishment for past optimism . I know that's not the case and that it probably doesn't compare to living to a global war, but this is like nothing I have known. I've never had so few means of emotional relief.

    Certain things are helping me at moments. I'am doing Adult colouring books. I'am reading. I'am watching sweet videos. I'am chatting long distance. What nothing is truly helping with is my sense of powerlessness and my need for some certainty and normality. Does anyone have any ways of coping with that?

    Wishing you all well

    1 person found this helpful
  3. geoff
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    geoff avatar
    15566 posts
    31 March 2020 in reply to Nurse Jenn

    Hello Everyone, once this virus is under control, one way or another, then if another illness suddenly appears, do we have to lock down the country again, some may yes and some would say no- just a thought.

    Geoff.

    1 person found this helpful
  4. Summer Rose
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    Summer Rose avatar
    1615 posts
    31 March 2020 in reply to Feeler

    Hi Feeler

    Welcome to the bb forums and thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings so well in your first post.

    You have asked for ways of coping with the need for normality. For me, it's about creating my new normal. Basically I'm planning and scheduling time for things I have never done before to productively fill my days in the house. Time for reading, cleaning, deep cleaning, organising my house, a walk, gym work (in the garage), socialising through my phone, playing with my dog, etc.

    I am filling my days, as best I can, with very different activities to what I am used to as I am not currently working. But having a new schedule for what I'm doing each day at home and when I'm doing it helps. It helps me to feel less "lost" in my house and stops me wasting time. It also gives me a purpose each day.

    You've also asked for advice on how to cope with a need for certainty. This is trickier because coronavirus is highlighting to the world that there really is no certainty in life. And millions of people are being reminded, or learning for the first time, that life isn't fair. It's a tough pill to swallow. But what counters this, Feeler, is hope.

    No matter what life throws at us there is always hope for better days ahead. Right now there are brilliant scientists in labs across the world working on a vaccine. There are doctors here in Australia working to refine treatments. There are nurses, doctors and paramedics in all States and Territories getting ready to care for us. We have State and Federal governments doing their best to protect us from harm. And there are millions of Australians listening and doing what they are asked to help stop the spread of the virus.

    We will get to the other side of this. It will pass. You just hang in there and create a new normal that helps you through.

    Kind thoughts to you

    4 people found this helpful
  5. Blufftuff
    Blufftuff avatar
    145 posts
    31 March 2020

    Our world we live in has changed and this will be remembered for ever,

    yes we have to abide by the rules we have been told about what we can and cannot do.

    We still need to inform our selves of the correct information a there is a lot of false information out there.

    My biggest concern is that we also need to be aware of our own well being during this time

    we may have to be more imaginative or even creative in how we fill in our days now

    I saw some one dress up as if they were at the beach turned on TV with a beautiful beach scene and to top it off they even had a cocktail in their hands.

    Doing this sort of thing will do wonders for our own personal well being

    Take care.

    3 people found this helpful
  6. CalmCat
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    CalmCat avatar
    354 posts
    31 March 2020 in reply to Sophie_M

    Hey Sophie M,

    Thanks for your four questions.

    I've answered them as follows:

    What thoughts are helpful for you at the moment?

    I think its important to say "I'll handle it". We are all going to get through this, so thinking of something positive to get us through hard moments is vital.

    What are you doing to remain connected? I'm using this great platform to stay connected, while start group questions for my team at work.

    How are you taking care of yourself and others? Communication is key and its still is number one in these hard times.

    What are you finding helpful in reducing your anxiety during this time? I've been making sure I've been doing 10000 steps a day and also been spending longer in the kitchen, cooking even heather meals than I used to.

    Thanks again for your amazing questions Sophie M.

    Regards,

    2 people found this helpful
  7. Gum Leaf
    Gum Leaf avatar
    10 posts
    31 March 2020 in reply to Feeler

    Hi Feeler,

    One thing that I’m finding helpful at the moment is spending a few minutes each day thinking about things I’m grateful for. I’ve read it’s quite good to make it part of your routine, for example when you get into bed each night. It can be simple things like a good meal you had that day or big things. For example I have been thinking that because I’m staying at home with my kids I’m getting to know them better and doing some projects with them I wouldn’t do otherwise.

    To be honest I use to be cynical about gratitude practices but it really is an antidote in my experience to anxiety and depression.

    Best wishes,

    Mel

    3 people found this helpful
  8. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    quirkywords avatar
    13046 posts
    31 March 2020 in reply to Sophie_M

    hello everyonme

    Sophie suggested framing our posts around these questions. I like asking and answering question so here goes,

    What thoughts are helpful for you at the moment?

    I find it helpful to think things will change.

    What are you doing to remain connected?

    I am writing to people and posting letter. I am texting phoning whats aping and video chats.

    How are you taking care of yourself and others?

    Keeping touch , staying calm and being patient

    What are you finding helpful in reducing your anxiety during this time?

    I like watching funny parody songs and funny videos and funny show on you tube or iview.

    Also going on works and eating well with the occasional timtam!

    Feller, welcome and thanks for sharing your ideas of things that work for you.

    2 people found this helpful
  9. l'oiseau
    l'oiseau avatar
    21 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Gum Leaf

    Thank you everyone for your helpful thoughts and sharing of what is working for you.

    I would like to share something that surprised me very recently. Recently, I began a short course on building inner strength: it's theme was abundance but I decided it wasn't for me as I am content with simplicity and contentment with the essentials.

    But something I was asked to do on the first day was to write down the names of at least 50 people who have positively influenced me since as far back as I can remember (can be family, friends, authors...anyone!) Initially, I thought, I would have trouble coming up with 5 names.

    Then, I made myself do it and could not believe how it changed how I saw myself - when I wrote down the names, that initially came very, very slowly, somehow I was able to see how I was made up of different qualities, that previously I would never have acknowledged. I don't have a big opinion of myself, but it made me realise some positive things about myself...

    Be well and encouraged that we are getting through another big day together.

    5 people found this helpful
  10. LeavesEyes
    LeavesEyes avatar
    1 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Guest_9043

    Dear 2quik and everyone,

    This is my first post. I am currently in lockdown, and while I recognise the necessity of this, my anxiety and depression worsen by the day. I have been on anti-depressants for about five years. 2quik - your post echoes my fears more than any other post I have seen. All the mindfulness and 'keep calm' talk coming from the government and media cannot help me. The police now have controls like never before. I am worried this will never end and we will be left with a police state and a society so atomised as to lose all meaning. Now we are being told to 'embrace the new normal'. This is not something I can embrace. Social media and the phone are no substitute for a hug, no matter when they try to tell us.

    Three and a half weeks ago, I was abroad in Europe. I could go wherever I wanted. I saw beautiful landmarks, met new people every day. I met lovers there. I ate amazing food. I was freer than I have ever been. Then I had to cut my trip short to get home to Australia as Europe went into lock down and flights were cancelled. Now my world consists of three rooms and a computer screen. The virus has stripped away almost everything that gave my life meaning. I am fortunate enough to be able to work from home with minimal disruption (I work for an online university). In the short term, the crisis is actually financially good for me, when it has been devastating for so many others. But I cannot live this way long term. I am coping now; in a few months with no end in sight, I will not be coping. If this is the new normal, I cannot be a part of it. This is no way to live.

    3 people found this helpful
  11. Feeler
    Feeler avatar
    10 posts
    1 April 2020

    Thanks for the replies to my post

    You are right about accepting a new normal, Summer Rose. I am struggling with the new normal because I'am associating it with why it has to be in place, but I think it will help to incorporate plenty of what's familiar. As for hope, I do dread the possibilities of the eighteen months a vaccine needs to be deemed safe, but I guess things won't have to stay exactly as they are until then.

    You're right about gratitude, Gum Leaf.

    2quik - I admit that I don't know much about your situation but lockdown is for the good of us all. You can leave your home for essentials or out of home work. You can go for a jog or walk. You can get in touch with People long distance in a whole variety of ways. Think how being arrested or fined might harm your mental health. I hope that helps.

    All the best

    5 people found this helpful
  12. Moonstruck
    Moonstruck avatar
    3748 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to LeavesEyes

    LeavesEyes.....just wanted to say your words resonated so well with me....I understand completely where you are coming from. Almost from Day One my first thought was " the cure is probably going to be worse than the disease"....each day I see more and more evidence of this......I feel for you, you are not alone...in your views anyway.......best thoughts to you...MoonStruck........

    1 person found this helpful
  13. Gambit87
    Gambit87 avatar
    715 posts
    1 April 2020

    Hi all,

    I've got a bit of cabin fever already. I'm trying to do things to keep busy but im feeling very all over the place at the moment. I'm even thinking about going into work instead of working from home. I totally understand why this is necessary and all for it but it plays on the mind.

    hope you all are doing well.

    1 person found this helpful
  14. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    quirkywords avatar
    13046 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to LeavesEyes

    hello everyone

    Welcome LeavesEyes to the forum and to this thread.

    Thanks for your first post.

    Any change is very difficult to cope with and what we are being asked to do know is so different from anything that has happened before hand.

    I lost a lot in the fires and now I cant see my children and granddaughter who was really helping me. Yes it feels so unfair but if the pandemic keeps going all our lives will be changed.

    S you noted you have your job and are better off than many. Of course no one wants to live like this but it will end and maybe we will learn things about ourselves , learn what community means and learn about our neighbours. More people have been learning to cok, sew, and learn practical skills.

    I understand the feeling of feeling like we will not be coping.

    welcome you to write here and express your views as many here will relate to you. Being honest and self aware will help you and others.

    Thanks again for sharing your thoughts.

    1 person found this helpful
  15. calmseeker
    calmseeker avatar
    333 posts
    1 April 2020

    Hi All,

    I hope that on the other side of all of this, people end up being much kinder to each other.

    Stay well everyone :)

    3 people found this helpful
  16. Gum Leaf
    Gum Leaf avatar
    10 posts
    1 April 2020

    Afternoon All,

    I too worry about how long this situation will go on for. I also worry about how people like my mother and grandma who live alone with cope not seeing friends and family.

    The truth is we don’t know how long this will go on for. All we can control is what we are doing and thinking in the present moment.

    The funny thing is we think there are certainties in our lives but in fact there is never any certainty, we just think there is because we get into routines.

    Because of this big change to how we live we suddenly think nothing is certain but in fact nothing was ever certain.

    We need to try and become aware of when we are thinking negatively about our situation. Acknowledge the thoughts and then try to get on with something else. I have been trying to do this but it is challenging. I have found a new technique that seems to work when my negative thoughts are escalating. I put some music I really like up loud. I find through head phones is best. I then try to engross myself in the music. I often move and dance to the music a bit too.

    Give it a try if you are thinking negatively or feeling anxious or low. Music and dancing are so therapeutic.

    Hugs to all.

    4 people found this helpful
  17. Blufftuff
    Blufftuff avatar
    145 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Gum Leaf

    Hi there,

    Totally agree music is a fantastic tool to help take our mind off all the negative stuff going on round us,

    There are other tools as well, we can be imaginative or creative in many, some people love painting, reading a great book, and the list goes on and on.

    Keep up listening to the music.

    Great work.

  18. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    quirkywords avatar
    13046 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Gum Leaf

    Hello everyone

    Gumleaf

    thanks for your post. I agree I think we need to cope with uncertainty..

    We need to try and become aware of when we are thinking negatively about our situation. Acknowledge the thoughts and then try to get on with something else.

    I have found a new technique that seems to work when my negative thoughts are escalating. I put some music I really like up loud. I find through head phones is best. I then try to engross myself in the music. I often move and dance to the music a bit too.

    These are great idea that work for you. Does anyone have any ideas that woek for them.

    Blufftuff I agree music is helpful as well as other creative outlets.

  19. Mel2334
    Mel2334 avatar
    4 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Shelll
    I love walking and getting fresh air air as well but going out was abit of a surprise as u have to keep away from people and the environment outside is abit different still doing house work and also watching tv is fun seeing the news is abit annoying
    1 person found this helpful
  20. Sleepy21
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    Sleepy21 avatar
    4463 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Mel2334
    Hi Mel I agree the news is too much and over playing. Just wanted to announce something that I hope I don't regret and isn't misinfomation :( I called BeyondBlue today for support and the worker told me that the goverment is considering increasing the 10 free sessions you can get for therapy/psychology with a Mental Health Care plan - to twenty. I doubt it will happen :( But if it were, think of how many people would feel more confident in seeking help. I am pleased either way that the government is investing tonnes into mental health. That is priority at this time, at least they seem to get it.
    1 person found this helpful
  21. Gambit87
    Gambit87 avatar
    715 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Sleepy21

    I hope that the government increases the sessions! good to see they're not leaving mental health behind.

    My partner and I did the grocery shop today - I was so excited haha.

    I'm still seeing alot of people not practicing social distancing.

    1 person found this helpful
  22. blondguy
    Life Member
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    blondguy avatar
    11264 posts
    1 April 2020 in reply to Gambit87

    There is always some good news :-)

    The hoarding of groceries has reduced...a lot...thank goodness!....went shopping today and there was heaps of stock...Shelves full of minced beef....fresh bread...Moo Juice....canned food......Its all good here...except for the lack of social distancing as Gambit mentioned above

    3 people found this helpful
  23. Gum Leaf
    Gum Leaf avatar
    10 posts
    2 April 2020

    Morning All,

    Something I’m really struggling with at the moment is my overwhelming shock and sadness when I see the figures of how many people in the world have died and are critically sick from this virus.

    I’m also very scared and angry for countries like India with so many people living so close together. They are in complete lock down but I can’t even imagine how hard that is for them when a lot of people live in such small dwellings.

    I don’t know how to manage my emphatic feeling at the moment. Any suggestions?

    Take care of yourselves,

    Mel

    2 people found this helpful
  24. Sleepy21
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    Sleepy21 avatar
    4463 posts
    2 April 2020 in reply to blondguy

    Yes I was so excited - stores are filling back up with products. I got soy milk and oats yesterday.

    I got a little TOO excited and took 3 boxes of soy milk, and the cashier told me nah-ah - i'm only allowed two. Forgot about that!

    2 people found this helpful
  25. quirkywords
    Community Champion
    • Outstanding members who have volunteered their time to support others here on the forums
    • Life membership is awarded by beyondblue for providing outstanding peer support to the online community over a period of 3+ years.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    quirkywords avatar
    13046 posts
    2 April 2020 in reply to Gum Leaf

    Hello everyone

    Gum leaf, it is hard how other countries are treating people. I get upset too.

    We cant control how other countries treat each other but we can be kind to each other here and patient.

    I must be in an area we there are low supplies or lots of hoarders but am glad other shelves are filling up.

    ow often are people going to supermarket? Is it more or less than usual?

    Sleepy in other times buying 3 of something you use would not be noticed.

  26. CalmCat
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    CalmCat avatar
    354 posts
    2 April 2020 in reply to Gum Leaf

    Hi Gum Leaf,

    You sound like an amazing person, full of love for all.

    One of my specialties is Geo-Politics, all I know is that each country is developing day-by-day. Once Australia was a bit rougher. Now we are so blessed, with the children of these countries most likely to be blessed like us in the years to come.

    I think reaching out on this forum is a great way to utilities your empathy.

    Regards,

  27. PamelaR
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    PamelaR avatar
    2740 posts
    3 April 2020 in reply to CalmCat

    Hi Doz 86

    I like your wisdom, reaching out here is a great move for anyone.

    Hello all, I've been away for awhile due to my own mental health, then Coronavirus happened. I haven't read through all this thread, as it's late and I must away soon. I'll start with looking at the questions Sophie posed at the top of the page -

    What thoughts are helpful for you at the moment?

    Being in the moment helps me. That is - focussing on me and those close around me (e.g. my husband). What I'm eating, what I'm doing (gardening, photographing, walking in the street keeping 2m distance, watching 007 repeats, keeping the cats amused, helping friends and neighbours). I don't think past that. To help me with this I only look or listen to the news very infrequently. Just so I know what is going on about me - i.e. what's closing, what's opening, but not enough to make me feel worse. To watch and to listen to news from overseas about how other countries are fairing is unhelpful for me. I cannot do anything to change what's happening,so why do I need to know about it. It's sad, awful and heartbreaking, but I do not need to think about it.
    What are you doing to remain connected?

    My main source of connection is through - Facebook, Messenger, Phone. I make sure that each day I look to see posts from my friends and family. How are things going for them. Is there a need to personal message them and to talk. In some case this is necessary. I stay in touch with neighbours who stay in touch with me. It's been really good. Then a relative who is in a nursing home was able to Skype me earlier this week. How good is that - the organisation has set it up. Wonderful.
    How are you taking care of yourself and others?

    Being mindful of what we are all experiencing. It's something completely new, profoundly changing and letting myself and others talk about our feelings at this time. That's been one of the very important things for me and my friends and family. Switching off the news, unless I think there is something we need to know about shutdowns etc.

    I'll finish the last question in the next post.

    Kind regards

    PamelaR

    3 people found this helpful
  28. PamelaR
    Champion Alumni
    • Community champion volunteers who are not currently active on the forums.
    • A member of beyondblue's blueVoices community
    PamelaR avatar
    2740 posts
    3 April 2020

    Hi all,

    The last question is:

    What are you finding helpful in reducing your anxiety during this time?

    Basically not reading, watching or listening to news reports, or current affairs programs.

    Staying in touch with friends and family via social media. On Facebook I try to post funny jokes, to find and post new and innovative things people are doing in isolation. There are so many wonderful things happening out there. For example, an orchestra from the Netherlands played a performance - each musician was in their own home. The piece they played was remarkable. It made me realise how resilient we are. Then I saw another performance by musicians all over the world that was introduced by Ringo Starr - wow. He just rocked me.

    These performances are available through YouTube. If you're up to it feel free to do a search for 'Playing for Change'. Here are some links that give me hope and that help me reduce my anxiety:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ph1GU1qQ1zQ The Weight Featuring Robbie Robertson and Ringo Starr

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nNBtwsPigcc Ode to Joy

    Then dare I say it, I've been listening to all the songs that have been rehashed to insert words about what's happening. Some may find this appalling, I've found it relieves my stress and anxiety no end. I won't list the songs here because they could be seen in bad taste. But if you're up for it you'll find a lot on YouTube. People are very innovative and creative in the down times. It's truly heartening, it gives to me hope, strength and resilience.

    Kind regards

    PamelaR

    1 person found this helpful
  29. Temora
    Temora avatar
    1 posts
    3 April 2020 in reply to Sleepy21

    Hi Sleepy21, This is my first post and it’s great to feel that you are not alone at this time and that many people are dealing with anxiety, depression and uncertainty. Making the most of the nice weather so have enjoyed sitting in my small garden. At least my two dogs love having me home. I think it will be hard over winter so need to find something new to learn. Have not been motivated as yet still trying to cope with the isolation and changes. Very worried about family overseas was planning on visiting them this year as they are older and have health problems. Not sure when I can now. I have a step mum in aged care that I cannot visit which is so upsetting as she is now quite frail. I have found putting on music and doing a jigsaw puzzle is really relaxing for me. A few hours can go by without worrying about anything else. So it’s a way of being mindful for that time. Old fashioned I know but it works for me.

    Sleepy21 said:Hey Ren - Welcome!!!! what books are you reading? What else are you enjoying on Netflix?? I'm actually so so bored and trying so hard to remember to do pleasant things and not just get lost in how mundane everything is getting. Now I'm off to boil up a healthy hot chocolate. Maybe journal a little... Would love to hear from others what is working for them to feel human and relaxed during these end-of-days times
    know but fun.

  30. Feeler
    Feeler avatar
    10 posts
    3 April 2020 in reply to PamelaR

    Hi PamelaR

    Limiting news helps me as well. I do check my news site three times a day (I feel shallow if I don't) but I don't -following my first look- go further down than I need to to know the local situation. I still have two other news outlets Liked on Facebook (I can't bring myself to even temporarily Unlike them) which has given me some difficult moments but I'am mostly feeling better for efforts to avoid as many developments as I practically can.

    I too too have been staying in touch with friends. My Family are mostly at home with me but we keep in touch with my interstate Brother.

    I'll be sure to check the orchestra video out.

    All the best

Stay in touch with us

Sign up below for regular emails filled with information, advice and support for you or your loved ones.


Sign me up