Laying on Couch Lockdown Fatigue
Dear Therapist,  Infectious Disease

Lockdown Fatigue

I've been at home for the entire lockdown, and honestly I began the lockdown with a lot of energy. It opened up a lot of what life can be for me, I cooked, I learned, I engaged and I lived a fulfilling life from my home. But honestly, now I'm irritable, frustrated, and angry all the time. I know myself enough to know my family is not irritating me but the situation is. It's difficult for me to figure out what about the situation is irritating me but it is. Living like this is difficult and it should stop! My request is for some suggestions on ways to nurture my relationships and make this period a fulfilling one?

Irritated in Lockdown

It looks like you are struggling with the inevitable fallout of COVID-19, lockdown fatigue. You are not alone! Most of us are struggling with feelings of exhaustion, irritability, anger, low motivation, and feeling of lack of energy.
This is experienced when we are losing morale and grappling with the uncertainty of the future. Even though you may not be consciously thinking about the future, you are subconsciously planning and thinking of life post lockdown and the fatal question – what’s the point. These thoughts are rooted in psychological distress, and the lockdown has piled on a lot on us! Monotony, fear, worry, over stimulation, and the lack of physical contact.
This odd mix of emotions requires an odd mix of strategies that can help. My suggestion is try all of these, and then choose the ones that benefit you, and then rework your list of lockdown self-care again. Remember, you’re learning how to survive the lockdown so a few errors and reworking is normal, natural, and expected!
Here’s the list…
1. Allow yourself to feel your feelings, journal about them! Choose a medium that you want to express these feelings with, and do it! Let the flood gates of emotions open!
2. Maintain your basic functioning but let go of unrealistic or lofty goals. Fulfilling the basic is a win!
3. Prioritise and not schedule. These are different times, sticking to your familiar way of working may be a struggle. Rework that! Create a priority list and only focus on the 1st thing on that list for the day.
4. Rituals can be sacred. Creating relaxing rituals, like lighting a candle in the evening, playing jazz as you retire for the day, or reading in a nook of your home. Find something that is only about you!
5. Thread your day. Find one activity that ties your day together, it could be a goal your working towards – a sense of purpose. This gives a firm sense of the now especially when the days are blurring together.
6. Naps are to be planned. Always stay hydrated. Move your body. All 3 help beat sluggishness, fatigue, and a great way to keep your mind clear.
7. Find your flow. Choose an activity that you can engage with regularly, that is a level up/ mildly challenging. Not something too easy or too challenging. A lot of people have choose baking or cooking as their meditative flow activities, while others have gravitated towards Yoga. Choose something that gives you flow.
Lockdown fatigue is real, but mix it up! Try these different suggestions.

Meet your therapist
Priyanka Varma Clinical Psychologist
She believes emotional and mental health care are at the very core of us experiencing happiness in our life. Her qualifications include a Masters in Clinical Psychology and in Counselling and Psychotherapy. Priyanka enjoys working with young adults and understanding life as it changes with intrusions like the internet and the pandemic. Above everything else her true love is homemade chocolate cake.

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