New research from Aviva has shown that the COVID19 lockdown affected women’s wellbeing more than men’s. Conducted amongst 2,000 UK-based working adults:
- 59% of women reported higher levels of stress during the lockdown period (vs 45% of men)
- 46% of women said the quality of their sleep was poor (vs 36% of men)
- 45% of women said they had struggled to eat healthily during lockdown (vs 32% of men)
In other research, we have learned that although women’s generally stronger immune systems and better lifestyle choices have helped their resilience in the face of COVID19, a number of important professional and employment factors are at play. For example, well over a half of front-line healthcare workers are women which puts them at potentially greater risk of exposure to the virus. They are also 30% more likely than men to be working in sectors hard hit by the pandemic, such as tourism or hospitality. We also know that women have taken on the lion’s share of housework and childcare during lockdown, whilst balancing full-time work or facing job insecurity. All of these factors may well be behind the inequalities reported above
Overall, more than half of all Britons aged 45-54 questioned for Aviva’s research admitted to being more worried about their financial situation than before lockdown. Those termed ‘the sandwich generation’ (so called because they are sandwiched between responsibilities for both children and elderly parents) were particularly badly hit as one in six reported that their adult children’s financial dependence on them had increased during the pandemic.
Many organisations have developed resources to support those who are suffering from particular mental health difficulties caused by the pandemic and lockdown. For example, MIND has information on topics as diverse as anxiety about mask wearing, through to fears about the easing of lockdown and returning to work. The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) has dedicated a section of its website to providing information and Coronavirus support – although this is mainly targeted at employers.
There are many other resources also available on line.
Of course, mental health issues have not just emerged during lockdown. The importance of maintaining positive mental health has long been recognised, and much effort has been spent by government, mental health charities, professional organisations and a number of very high-profile celebrities to reduce the stigma associated with mental health problems.
You may also be interested to know that Brunsdon Financial’s Chairman, Brian Morman, has included a specific chapter in his book: “Your Bigger Future” on the subject of how to maintain a healthy mind. This includes his ‘10 stress buster tips’ and ’10 steps towards a healthy mind’. You can read this free of charge within this downloadable chapter, or visit the Your Bigger Future website for further information.
Please note that the views expressed in the book, ‘Your Bigger Future’, are solely those of the author Brian Morman and not those of Brunsdon Financial.
Brunsdon Financial is not responsible for the content of third party web sites.