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Anna's November Challenge

Anna, one of the Wellbeing Advisors for Positive Minds, tells us how she is staying positive during lockdown.

Anna, one of the Wellbeing Advisors for Positive Minds

Like many people, I often need to put some effort in to keeping on top of my mental health and this year that has been even more important.

Putting together a personal wellness plan or even giving ourselves a reasonable challenge to do can help us keep on top of low mood. With this in mind, I decided to use my right to exercise and try to hit at least 10k steps a day throughout November. As someone who hates gym style exercise but loves the outdoors this seemed like a good challenge for me to do.

The first few days I felt great, getting out in the fresh air and keeping up the movement gave me a clear head and my mood was very upbeat. Then came the challenges. On day 5 I had a notification I needed to quarantine for 5 days, this made things a lot more difficult, I had to think outside the box so I did a lot of housework (music made this bearable), dancing and playing ball with my toddler as much as possible. My mood dipped during this time, but I think it would've been worse had I not kept going.

By day 10 I had the all clear so continued going out for walks, there are times when I have not felt like going but I have learnt that those are always the times I will benefit from it the most. I am over halfway through now and I can confidently say it has really boosted my mood and once November is over, I will continue to walk as much as possible. 

If you are going to embark on a step challenge my tops tips are:

  1. Plan your walks to fit in nicely with your day, I found I always preferred to go early morning as it meant I started the day on a high but go with whatever fits with your life.
  2. Create a few playlists to match your mood of all your favourite songs, I found this especially important when I was stuck inside.
  3. Change your route, go places that you like, bring you peace or you have never been to before.
  4. Take time to rest your legs in a warm bath made just the way you like it.
  5. If it is bad weather, I recommend the beach to watch the waves crash, I recommend listening to Breathe by the prodigy at the same time but each to their own!

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