Lockdown has been a journey for most of us. Mentally, physically and even financially.
There have been lots of big changes over the last few months. Naturally, these changes have impacted a lot of people’s mental health around the UK. From working from home, losing jobs and being furloughed, to not seeing loved ones and missing out on important events like graduations, anniversaries and even births! All of this can take its toll on someone’s mind and it isn’t surprising.
We imagine life has been extra stressful for those who have been furloughed or lost their jobs this year. For that reason, we’re letting you know about a free mental health resource for those who are unemployed or furloughed in the UK.
Mental health help UK
The mindfulness app, Headspace have recently announced that if you’re unemployed or have been furloughed, you can use their app for free for 12 months. Headspace is a subscription-based app used by millions of users who want to improve their mental health in over 190 countries. It provides users with access to guided meditations, animations, articles and videos in a bid to “improve the health and happiness of the world”.
How does meditation help mental health?
There are lots of ways in which meditation helps with mental health. Here are just some of them:
• Improved focus
• Sense of calm
• Increased awareness
• Reduction in depression (one study showed a huge 46% reduction with staff who used Headspace for 8 weeks!)
• Reduction in anxiety (the same study showed a 31% reduction in anxiety in staff)
• Increased satisfaction with life
Getting help for mental health
We know that seeking help if you’re struggling with your mental health can be daunting – especially if this is one of the first times in your life you’ve found yourself struggling. But it’s so important to talk and ask for help if you need it.
1 in 4 people in England experience a mental health problem per year – it’s that common. So make sure you reach out and speak to your doctor, friends and family to get some help if you need to. If you’re unemployed or furloughed, you can also choose to use the Headspace app to practice mindfulness to help with your overall mental health.
How to get mental health help
If you’re seeking professional help, you may want to book an appointment with your GP as a first port of call. They’ll be able to chat to you about how you’re feeling and point you in the direction of services that can help. Try not to feel worried about this process, your GP is there to support you and you’ll be listened to without judgement.
If you’re in need of more urgent help, head here to learn more about emergency mental health services within the NHS.
Free mental health apps
If you’re unemployed or furloughed, you can head here to apply for a free 12 month Headspace subscription (the offer expires on 31/08/2020). You’ll have unlimited access to the app where you can take part in:
• Guided meditation
• Courses on stress and how to manage it
• Features to help you sleep (such as ‘sleepcasts’, music and sounds)
• Continued guidance on all things meditation-related
• More premium features that you’d normally need to pay for
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