Looking after your mental wellbeing

Staying mentally healthy

​Your emotional and mental wellbeing is important. It is normal to feel stressed or lonely when self-isolating, but there are some things you can do to feel better.

Even if you are not sick you may be feeling anxious about COVID-19. This is normal.

Managing your mental wellbeing 

Reach out to your usual supports over the phone – family and whānau, friends and workmates. Sharing how we feel and offering support to others is important. 

We also recommend sticking to a routine such as having regular mealtimes, bedtimes and exercising.

If you feel you’re not coping 

If you feel you're not coping, it's important to talk with a health professional. For support with grief, anxiety, distress or mental wellbeing, you can call or text 1737 – free, anytime, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week – to talk with a trained counsellor.  
Tell yourself that how you are feeling is a normal reaction and will pass – it’s nothing to be afraid of. 

We’re all in this together, and while we might not be able to be physically in touch right now, it’s important to stay connected in other ways. New Zealand is known for its manaakitanga and now more than ever we need to remember the power of kindness and uniting together.

If you’re not sure what assistance may be available, or you don’t know who to contact for help, call the Government Helpline on 0800 779 997, 8am to 10pm, 7 days a week.

Top ways to look after your mental wellbeing

While there are things that we can’t control now, there are things we can do to boost our mental wellbeing and that of your loved ones:

Stay connected

This is important for our wellbeing and helps to make us feel safer, less stressed and less anxious. We can support each other to get through this. While we are limiting social contact to contain the spread of COVID-19, there are still lots of ways we can connect.

Acknowledge your feelings

It’s completely normal to feel overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, worried or scared in the current situation. Allow yourself time to notice and express what you’re feeling. This could be by writing thoughts and feelings down in a journal, talking to others, doing something creative or practising meditation. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you’re feeling. Reach out to others.

Stick to routines where possible

Try to go to sleep and wake up at the same time, eat at regular times, shower, change your clothes, have regular e-meetings with colleagues or virtual coffee dates with friends and do your chores. Meditating and exercising can help you to relax and have a positive impact on your thoughts. Try not to increase unhealthy habits like comfort eating, drinking, smoking or vaping.

Check-in on other people who might need help

Reaching out to those who may be feeling alone or concerned can benefit both you and the person receiving support.

Seek accurate information from legitimate sources

You may find it useful to limit your media intake. Get the facts from this website to help distinguish facts from rumours. Seek information updates at specific times once or twice a day.

Don’t be afraid to seek further professional support

For support with anxiety, distress or mental wellbeing, you can call or text 1737 to talk with a trained counsellor for free, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Continue existing mental health treatment if possible

Notice if your symptoms are getting worse. Talk to your GP, counsellor, caseworker or mental health team about how they can continue supporting you. Can your appointments take place over the phone, via email, text or video chat? What tips do they have to help you get through? Who can you call if you need help urgently?

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