Amy, 22, a Jigsaw volunteer from Limerick shares her experience of the pandemic.
My experience of the Covid-19 pandemic has been somewhat different to that of my peers, as I am living in a high-risk household. A member of my family is currently undergoing chemotherapy which compromises their health immensely. Because of this, myself and the other members of my family are not only responsible for our own health, but for their health too.
The feeling of responsibility for someone else’s health is a difficult feeling to put into words. I did not feel much pressure and frustration during the first lockdown as everyone was in the same boat. I oddly felt safer and more relaxed knowing that everyone was undertaking the necessary precautions.
Uncertainty around exams and missing out on experiences has left many young people feeling frustrated. Many students can find themselves procrastinating or losing sight of their end goals.
Take comfort in knowing that learning how to self-direct your study is a skill for life.
Below, find a helpful conversation between Evelyn O’Rourke from RTÉ Radio 1 Drive Time’s Study Hub and Jen Trzeciak, eMental Health Manager at Jigsaw, about ways for students to stay motivated to study in a time of uncertainty around exams and school.
Here are some more strategies to help you stay motivated when studying from home:
I think the lockdown is damaging my eating habits and the way I view myself. I’ve been isolated to my house for weeks now. I’ve felt an extreme hatred towards myself, and it just seems to worsen everyday.
But I feel so awful for upsetting my family, especially my mam, who I know is being really hard on herself because of how I’m behaving.
Ireally do try to eat and not think about the disordered thoughts, but because I can’t distract myself, I feel sort of trapped with them.
I feel extremely guilty and horrible for adding more stress to my family, but I just can’t do what they’re asking me. I can’t see myself getting better and I feel like such a burden on everyone. I really do wish I could snap my fingers and make everything right, but I can’t. I don’t know what to do, it’s too difficult.
I’m sorry to hear that you are going through such an intense experience during an already difficult time. Thoughts about body image can be all consuming, and can have a strong negative effect on our mental health, as you have described.
Being able to manage feelings is an important part of having good mental health.
This section provides activities to help young people develop their emotional vocabulary and understand and validate their feelings. It will then provide practical strategies they can use to manage more difficult feelings.
Má thacaítear le daoine óga láidreachtaí agus tacaíochtaí a aithint, airíonn siad sábháilte iontu féin agus ina bpobal.
Is bealach í an obair bunaithe ar láidreachtaí chun cabhrú le daoine óga a bheith dóchasach faoin todhchaí agus faoina gcumas dul i ngleic le dúshláin. Nuair a bhaintear úsáid as dearcadh bunaithe ar láidreachtaí le daoine óga, dírítear isteach ar na rudaí dearfacha a bhaineann leis na cúinsí ina bhfuil siad. Ní dhéanann an cur chuige seo neamhaird de dheacrachtaí an duine óig ach tarraingíonn sé go mór ar a gcuid saineolais agus a gcumas fadhbanna a réiteach.