MENTAL HEALTH AWARENESS MONTH
As you may or may not know, May is national Mental Health Awareness Month. I decided to join several other bloggers in dedicating a special post on each of our blogs to the cause. Mental health is a subject that is very close to my heart, not only because I studied Psychology, but also because I struggle with anxiety myself.
It is so easy these days, especially with all of the constant stimulation, to get caught up in stress and forget to take care of our mental health. We tend to think about work when we are at home, stress ourselves out over the number of likes on a recent Instagram post, beat ourselves up over not earning enough money, etc.. Very scarcely do we even realize when we are pushing ourselves too far let alone make an effort to care for our mental health.
They key to staying healthy and happy is truly keeping a balance. There aren’t any set rules or guidelines for all individuals but here are some ways to improve your own mental health.
WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR MENTAL HEALTH
First Thing’s First
Everyone is different so, in order to have good mental health, you must first understand yourself and the way you work. For example, if you are super introverted then you will need to balance all of the socializing and stimulation with some quiet activities like reading or watching T.V.. Here is one of my favorite resources for categorizing your personality type and it is completely free. If you are not into that kind of thing then just be sure you understand what stresses you out and why. Make sure you know the activities that make you feel better and the ones that make you more tense.
Meyers Briggs Personality Test – Fun fact, I am an INFJ
So, you have noticed throughout the day when you start to feel stressed or anxious and noted what caused it. Maybe you have a better idea of what is making you so tense. Now, think of the activities that make you feel better. Mark a little bit of time in your schedule for each day to do some of those activities. I am a huge introvert. For me, what relaxes me, is taking baths and reading while listening to light music. Yoga also really chills me out. I have added both of these things to my schedule and make sure to do them as planned. It keeps me balanced and makes sure I do overstimulate myself. If you took any of the tests above then you should be able to look at your personality type and see what is recommended for you.
Six Tips For Improving Your Mental Health
- Walk away from technology 30 minutes to an hour before bed. Unplug and do something that doesn’t involve any technology. Your brain needs time to wind down. Treat it well.
- Try adding some form of meditation to you morning or nighttime routine. Even if it is only for ten minutes. Sometimes we need to just sit with our thoughts, write them down in a journal, or just be. Unfortunately our attention spans are getting smaller and smaller because of our current technology so this should help keep us in check.
- Try some aromatherapy. If you have trouble turning off your brain at night and falling asleep or maybe you just feel tense when going to bed, then go to Target and buy a $20 essential oil diffuser. They even sell a premixed bottle of “Relax” that you can use. Put it on before bed and it turns itself off in the night. If you missed my post talking all about essential oils, check it out here.
- Get the correct amount of sleep. This seems like an obvious one but you would be surprised how many people don’t get enough sleep or get too much sleep. Find your balance and stick with it.
- Step away from social media. This is a hard one for some people. Most businesses even have several social media accounts these days. However, taking a short break can be really good for us. We tend to get caught up in what is happening and what people are wearing and it isn’t good for our self-esteem or for staying grounded. Turn it off after a certain time maybe.
- Do some form of exercise. We all try to do it and it can be a huge pain but any form of exercise is so good for you. It can help with depression and anxiety in addition to all of the physical benefits. You don’t have to lift weights. Just try biking or inning or rock climbing. Personally, I love doing yoga and inversions. The key is to do something you like.