Throughout the lockdowns, people have now accustomed to their new lifestyle and have developed cycles that could either be positive or negative. But it’s important to remember everyone is in the ame boat and your new normal may not be as negative as you think.


Music has always been a supportive influence in people’s lives and the benefits of playing your favourite songs on repeat have linked to therapy. During lockdown, the music industry has sky-rocketed with new artists releasing music via social media platforms such as Tiktok. With everyone being online nowadays, access to music has increased and it’s led more people to use it as a form of therapy. 


According to Mind UK, researchers found that music releases dopamine which is a feel good chemical in your brain. It’s found that dopamine can be up to 9% higher when you listen to music you enjoy. There is a clear link between listening to music and mental well-being. Recently, it’s become more evident how much people rely on music as a coping mechanism, therefore if you’re spending your time dancing round your living room blasting your favourite tune for hours on end- don’t feel guilty, it’s just self care! However, if you’re more keen on listening to sad songs, that’s self care too! Listening to sad music helps people understand and put words into their feelings. As well as this, it’s a healthy outlet for emotions and makes people reflect on their own experiences and feel comforted. It can also make you feel less alone in times of struggle, so just because the song is sad, doesn’t mean you are.


Along with listening to music, lounging on our sofas and binge-watching tv shows has become a part of the ‘new normal’. With this being said, it’s not necessarily a negative thing. Of course, it’s good to get up and stretch once in a while, but if your sofa has moulded into the shape of you, that’s okay too. Now, more than ever, people are staying sprawled on their sofas for work purposes and relaxation. Whilst doing so, people are consuming a lot more television than they usually would. But don’t be alarmed, ‘cinema therapy can be a powerful catalyst for healing and growth’ says Psychcentral. It’s said ‘cinema therapy allows us to use the effect of imagery, plot, music, etc. [...] for insight, inspiration and emotional release’. Now that you’re aware squashing the whole Harry Potter series into one day has benefits, go ahead- shame free! Also, it’s acceptable to rewatch shows and movies because it requires less mental energy and we know how they’ll make us feel, so it helps regulate emotions.


At the moment, people may be feeling anxious about their new life cycles that they’ve developed but it’s important to remember you’re not alone. Although it's vital to stay connected with friends and families throughout lockdown to maintain important relationships, it's okay to take time for yourself. There’s lots of benefits of being alone, for example it can improve concentration, boost creativity and make your personal interests a priority. Solitude can be a positive for your mental wellbeing and choosing to be alone at times can be rejuvenating. But it’s important that it’s something you choose and enjoy rather than it feeling like a punishment. It’s difficult to find things to do by yourself that don’t require you going out, due to COVID restrictions, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible to pass time on your own whilst still enjoying it. 

You could listen to your favourite musical artists, watch your favourite movies or pursue a hobby. These could include getting creative and doing some drawing, getting active and doing some exercise or spice it up, and do some meditation. There’s nothing stopping you from doing a few jumping jacks in your living room and a quick lap around the local park. All the small things that you do by yourself, contribute with self care and it’s vital that you take time for yourself in order to improve your mental health.