Well-being for staff during Covid-19

It’s normal and human to feel anxious right now. Check out the resources and services for information and help.

Why am I feeling anxious?

The Mental Health Foundation explain that it’s normal and human to feel anxious right now. COVID-19 presents a risk to human health and the way we live – your brain and your body are responding to that risk like they’re supposed to! It’s what’s sometimes called the “fight-or-flight” response – your body knows you might not be safe and it’s gearing you up to respond.

Unfortunately, that ‘fight-or-flight’ response doesn’t have anywhere to go right now – we’re not yet able to fight the virus and we have to respond to it not by fleeing but by staying at home. That means your brain has geared you up for battle, filling your tank with energy and adrenaline, and you’ve got nowhere to put it. Not being able to control so many things all at once causes distress. It’s natural and understandable.

What can I do to feel less anxious right now?

The Mental Health Foundation have FAQs on managing anxiety during COVID-19 including wellbeing tips that are helpful. Connect with people who make you feel safe and loved, find things to do that help you feel in control, get some exercise, do some breathing exercises and be kind to yourself.

  • If you need help with your anxiety, call or text Need to Talk 1737 to talk with a trained counsellor, 24/7 anytime.
  • Strategies for mental resilience and managing stress, anxiety and depression from the University's CALM website
  • The Ministry of Health and the All Right? website have further resources and tips for getting through this. Isolation not Isolated from the All Right? website
  • Arrange counselling by either emailing your GP or contacting EAP Services
  • Discuss strategies or alternative workplans with your manager or HR Manager.

This 40 minute video presentation by Dr Fiona Moir, Senior Lecturer, Faculty Medical Health Sciences, and Dr Renske van den Brink for the Centre for Medical Health Sciences Seminars:  A Pyramid of Self Care Strategies  covers a range of evidence-based, easy to use strategies for managing stress and staying well whilst juggling work and home commitments.

Visit the Mental Health Foundation website for minimising and managing stress in the workplace during COVID-19.