Managing Lockdown


People across Scotland are adapting to life under the new measures designed to fight the coronavirus outbreak. These necessary measures mean that we are quarantined in our homes for several weeks to come.  Travel plans have been disrupted, indefinite isolation, panic over scarce re-sources and information overload could be a recipe for increases in anxiety levels and feelings of isolation. But for carers there is an added challenge; being at home 24/7 with little or no respite could become very stressful. We have put together a few pointers that could help you manage the situation better.

1. Reframe

Reframing means looking at it in a different way. Sometimes removing our emotions and writing only the facts can be great for our mental wellbeing. The reason we suggest writing down the statement is purely to get it out of your head. When you write things down, a different part of your brain is activated this, in turn, stops your brain releasing the chemicals that keep it anxious and on guard.

Here is an example:

I am having to follow new cleaning routines, alter my movements and plans, stay indoors, cancel appointments and I am unable to see my close family and friends, the people I rely on to get support. I’m also worried that I will get ill or the person I care for will get ill…it’s all very frightening.

If you remove all the emotional responses and thoughts from that statement and stick to the facts…

This virus is changing the way we need to approach life so we stay safe

By acknowledging the facts (we all need to change our lives) and reassuring yourself (it will keep us safe) you can detach yourself from additional pressure.

2. Stay Close To Your Normal Routine

If you have a challenging caring role and have less support around this may not be an easy thing to do, it could be easy to fall into a more disorganised lifestyle, which could lead to negative thinking.

If you can, try to maintain some sort of structure from the pre-lockdown days. Wake up and go to bed at around the same time, eat proper meals rather than snacking and get our of your PJ’s even if you are tempted to keep them on all day! Sticking to your normal routine will keep you active and it will be easier to readjust to the outside world when things go back to normal…and things will go back to normal!

3. Avoid Obsessing Over Endless Coronavirus Coverage

Step away from the technology! if you have a tendency to consult Google and/or be lead by social media you may be over-researching the situation. Decide on one credible source of information and consult it only once per day for an update. If talking about it all the time is causing you anxiety, agree with friends and family that you will limit this and focus your conversation on other things, eg. make plans for when things go back to normal.

4. Keep Your Boundaries

There is lots of uncertainty happening in the outside world but you can still have control over your home. Try and be as organised as you can be, eg. try not to eat in bed or work on the sofa – just as before, eat at the kitchen table, and work at a desk or table if possible. Loosening these boundaries can confuse your routine and can contribute to feelings of disorganisation, which can add to the stress.

5. Try To Get Some ‘You’ Time

Try to make time each day for yourself. This may not be easy if you have heavy caring responsibilities but if you are able to safely leave the person that you care for even for a short time, it will help to get some respite. Try t take a walk every day, even a short one around the garden, connect with your friends and family by telephone of Facetime. If you can build these things into your daily routine it will give you something special, however small, to look forward to.

To hear how a fellow carer is coping with being isolated, go to

Surviving these Troubled Times, Coronavirus and Being a Carer – A Personal Take


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