Tuesday, 14 May 2019

Daily steps to boost your mental health.

Happy mental health awareness week my lovelies!

Did you know that approximately 1 in 4 people in the UK will experience a mental health problem each year? That's a quarter of the entire UK!

Personally, I tend to keep my mental health pretty private (not saying this is necessarily a good thing) and so I haven't really touched much on the topic on my blog. I haven't been diagnosed with a mental disorder but over the last few years, I have definitely become much more aware of my mental health and been working to try and improve it. With that being said, I thought today I would share some super easy, yet very effective, steps I take every day to boost, maintain and manage my mental health. A little disclaimer: These are just things that have worked for me and doesn't necessarily mean they will work for you. Everybody is different and you may find other ways that work better for you. Keep searching!

1. Get outside.
I am almost certain you will have heard this before, but for a good reason! I am such a country girl and being in nature almost immediately shifts my mental space to a much calmer and happier place. Recently, I have been trying to get into the habit of forcing myself outside when I feel myself spiralling. Just an aimless walk outside, to focus on my breathing, maybe listen to some music, really helps bring my focus to the moment and away from whatever has sparked my spiral.

2. Utilise those first few hours of the day.
Have you ever heard the phrase, 'win the morning, win the day'? Personally, my morning can really set the tone for my day, and using those first few hours to set the tone, immediately makes the rest of my day a little easier. For me, this might involve avoiding my phone, listening to some happy music, going for a walk, planning my day or a bit of yoga and meditation. You can find what works for you and just spend those hours allowing your brain to breathe before you start the day.

3. Connect with your body.
You can interpret this in whatever way suits you. This can range from physical to emotional to mental and how you perceive this may depend on the day too! Physically this could be going to the gym, a dance class, perhaps a little yoga. Emotionally you may want to try journalling or creating some form of art. Mentally this could include meditation. I personally like to try to incorporate something from each section, but some days you may feel the need to prioritise one area more than another. Take each day as it comes. I just find that connecting with my body helps me process my thoughts and feelings and helps me become more present too.

4. Find your mantra's.
As with everything else, you have to find what works for you here. I find it so beneficial to have a mantra or two that I can call upon when I find my mental health struggling. If I find myself feeling overwhelmed, anxious or just not right, repeating a little mantra to myself can help bring me back to the present moment and help shift my thoughts to a more logical space. My favourite mantra at the moment is 'You are here, in this moment, just living your life'. Even typing it now makes me feel a little better. Find your own mantra that connects to you and reminds you of what you need to focus on.

5. Make time for the little things.
We all have those little things in life that bring us joy and sometimes we need to schedule in time to enjoy them before life gets too busy. This could be playing the piano, painting a picture, reading a novel, gardening, playing on the trampoline, whatever it may be! I personally would try to avoid anything too techy, such as a video game, as having that separation has made such an impact on my mental health. 

So there we have my 5 simple steps to boost your mental health. It can seem a little overwhelming reading it all in a list like this, but I recommend taking them one step at a time. This week, maybe try to get outside every day, just for a week. Even a walk around the block can help. After a week, did you feel a difference? Now the next week, you could make a real effort to utilise your mornings. Just go from there!

Mental health affects all of us and whether you suffer from a disorder or not, I think we could all benefit from implementing a few daily steps to boost, maintain or manage our mental health.

Do you have any daily steps you take for self-care?


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