This post was updated on 13/05/21
From a young age, you are told of the importance to look after your health generally and this normally means your physical form. It is only later in life that you realise how it important it is to look after your mental health.
That’s still very true of this current time as well. Our lives have all changed in one way or another. There is more negativity around, routines have been disrupted, loved ones to worry over and there is a load more to think about overall.
We are living in stressful times and is important now more than ever to tune in to what you need. Everything starts with awareness and a willingness and to learn and grow. Today I have top ten tips for looking after your mental health. Remembering just how important you are.
Talk about your Feelings
Are you guilty of bottling things up? Try to deal with things on your own and not talk about how you are feeling or what you’re going through? You might be thinking that you don’t want to worry anyone else or that they wouldn’t understand. We are all going through a similar situation and can help each other out. I know my group Shine in Self-Care is doing just that. So do talk about what you’re going through. Call up a friend and have a natter and the group is always open for you to do the same thing.
It’s no surprise that keeping active and taking part in regular exercise can boost your self-esteem. It can help with concentration, improve your sleep, and many other ways of making you feel better. You can exercise outside, which is really beneficial as you’ll also be getting fresh air. If this isn’t an option for you or you want to mix it up, you can also exercise at home. The possibilities are endless, especially at the moment. Many fitness instructors have moved their usual classes online and there are loads of options on YouTube, including PE with Joe. If you are not used to exercise, a whole class might feel overwhelming. Choose a form of exercise that suites you and you’ll really enjoy-even if it doesn’t seem like it at first!
It sounds so simple doesn’t it? But quite often when you are busy or stressed, you might be tempted to reach for the quick fixes. The not so healthy options, telling yourself that you’ve not got time for anything else. If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know I’m al about treating yourself every now and again. There is something really luxurious about a couple of squares of dark chocolate in the evening for example. Use the 80:20 rule so if you remain on track the majority of the time for the benefit of overall health and wellbeing.
If you are drinking alcohol to change your mood and the odd glass of wine has become it’s odd not the have a glass of wine….then maybe it is time to reassess. The beginning of lockdown might have felt a bit like a holiday and far removed from your usual routine. However as the cliché goes, this is our new normal now so better habits start now. I’m partial to a crisp glass of white or a G&T as much as the next girl and allow these treats on a Friday or Saturday. Make water your drink of choice. You can glam it up with different flavours like cucumber and mint or strawberry or mango. Even use a wine glass if you want to.
Keep in Touch
There is nothing better than face to face contact with the ones you love. But in the current climate where that is not always possible, we can keep in contact on the phone and via video calls, due to the wonders of technology. At least then we can see their faces, their expressions and make a connection that way.
Ask for Help
You are not super-human, and no one is expecting you to be. It is okay if you get tired or overwhelmed. If things are getting all too much then you need to ask for help, and that’s okay. It might be there are jobs that you can outsource, whether that’s getting a take-away instead of cooking or employing a cleaner or a Virtual Assistant.
If you need professional help with your mental health, then please do use the help available.
Mind: 0300 123 3393
Samaritans: 116 123
Take a Break
A change of scenery can do you the world of good. Now at the moment, we’re not talking about anything radical like two weeks in the sun. You can dream about the adventures you’ll have when this crisis is over. Small every day changes can be just as effective. If you are working at home, for example. Step away from where you’re working and take a walk around the garden whilst the kettle boils. Taking those few moments will make a real difference to calming your mind and to help you to switch off for a minutes before going back to your day.
Doing Something That You’re Good At
Lose yourself in doing an activity that means you haven’t got any space left for worry or stress. Another benefit is that it can be good to spend some time not being a wife, carer, employee or business owner and just be you. To choose what this is, think about what activities make you smile just at the thought of doing them. What can you be doing and completely forget the time as you are so engrossed?
Accepting Who You Are
I quite often link this with not comparing yourself to others. We are all different. We are all unique and the difficulty when you compare yourself to others is you can very easily fall into a cycle of negative self-talk. When you accept who you are, you feel more content with yourself and what you can offer.
If you would like further support with this, you can join the waiting list for my online course: Know You’re Worth It. Sign up here.
Care for Others
This can really give us a boost about how we feel about ourselves, as well as helping other people. Look at ways that you could do that. there are all sorts of amazing ways especially at the moment. Perhaps you are going to the shops and you could see if your neighbours need anything. Even more simple than that is just make more effort to say hello to someone in the street. You don’t know, you might be the only person they speak to all day.
Further reading: Simple Ways to Be Kind and Brighten Someone’s Day
Would you like a 15 minute call to see if I could help you through one of my coaching programmes? Email me on firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s talk.