Mental health is an individual experience. One person’s anxiety can manifest very differently to another’s, while we all deal with stress in varying ways. What we do have in common though, is the tools to help manage our own experiences. Of course, if you feel that you’re suffering from mental health issues, you should see a professional who will be able to help you with specific treatments. However, here are a few realistic ways that could help you improve your daily mental wellbeing.
Studies have shown that consciously thinking about your breathing can activate different parts of your brain. It’s long been suggested that controlling your breathing can help with stress, anxiety and can be key in managing difficult situations. So next time you find yourself struggling, take a minute to breathe.
Skip Your Morning Workout
Life is about balance! Staying fit and healthy is important, but so is self-care. If you didn’t sleep well the night before or you’re running on empty, give yourself a breather and skip that morning workout for an extra hour in dreamland. Sleep is so important to mental health, so don’t treat it as the expendable item on your to-do list.
Start Treating Yourself Like You Treat Others
We’re far harder on ourselves that we would be on anyone else, especially someone we care about. So start treating yourself like someone you care about. Don’t beat yourself up over the small stuff and give yourself a break if you make a mistake. It can be so easy to use negative words when you think or talk about yourself, so instead talk about yourself like you would your best friend.
Sometimes, the easiest thing to do when you feel low is to hide. You know your own mental health and everyone is different, but for some, actually getting outside and doing something can work wonders. Make plans to meet a friend for coffee and stick to it. You may not feel like going when you’re at home, but once you’re out, you might just be glad of the experience. Also, a problem shared…
Learn How to Let Things Go
Obsessing over that thing you said that time, or the screw up you made at work is merely an exercise in self- flagellation. Disney was onto something when they told us to 'Let It Go'. As hard as it can sometimes be to put things in the past, you’ll do better when you’re not beating yourself up about things you can’t change.
We know, just up there we told you to skip your morning workout, but BALANCE is the key. Exercise is an amazing stress reliever and can give you something else to focus on. Whether it’s running, swimming, playing a sport, dance or a class – when you find the thing that you enjoy doing and takes you out of your own head for a while, stick with it.
In the words of Tom Haverford: ‘Treat Yo Self’. Indulge in what makes you feel better (although obviously, let's keep this sensible!), whether it be a long bath, a few episodes of your favourite show, playing an instrument, curling up with a book or baking something delicious for the office. Anything that makes you feel calmer and doesn’t have a negative impact on another aspect of your life, should be enjoyed.