LIVERPOOL, ENGLAND. Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson at the Cunard Building on 21 May 2021. Picture: Jennifer Bruce/Liverpool City Council.

BLOG: Mayor Joanne Anderson urges people to “Please look after yourself”

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In a heartfelt blog, Mayor Joanne Anderson reflects on the last year and makes a plea for people to put their health and wellbeing first.

Burnt-out, dog-tired, agitated. Just three feelings you might be experiencing after a 15 months like no other.

From the early days of the Coronavirus pandemic, when it all felt quite scary and we didn’t really know what was happening, to that fleeting promise of normality returning last summer, back to rising case numbers in the autumn, community testing and then January’s hard lockdown. It feels like we have been on a never-ending rollercoaster ride which we didn’t buy a ticket for.

I chose to throw myself into work during the pandemic, feeling lucky to have the opportunity as I lost two-thirds of my employment overnight in the first lockdown.  Work-life balance became non-existent for me when my office was the living room.  Now I am working in an office at the Cunard, I enjoy leaving the building to end the working day and make a point of trying not to work at home anymore.

As we cautiously move towards the lifting of Covid restrictions – on 19 July – I want to ask you to please look after yourself.

As a single mum, working full-time, I know my fair share about the stresses and strains of holding down a job and keeping family life going – and that’s in normal times. Tag on a global pandemic, a new role as Mayor and you ratchet up that pressure a hundred-fold.

So for me, new job, new start. Some of the things I am trying to do to look after my own wellbeing:

I try to fit in some ‘me time’ with little treats such as getting my nails done, or buying myself something nice.

Sometimes I have no choice, but I try to restrict the number of emails I send at a weekend.

I would choose sleep over anything else, but occasionally don’t sleep too well.  Instead of stressing about it, I will go for a bike ride at dawn.  I absolutely love being outside at the time of the day and it makes me feel good all day.  I usually sleep better the next night as well.

And I meet friends and socialise regularly. Sometimes I have to drag myself off the couch to do it, but I make myself, because I know I’ll feel boosted by their company and its like a top-up for good mental health.

We’re blessed with beautiful weather right now, so if you have the ability to go for a walk, a run or a bike ride, please do it.

We live in a beautiful city, get out there and enjoy it – in a socially distanced way of course!

Liverpool Waterfront