Today is World Mental Health Day. A day that promotes global mental health education, awareness and advocacy against the stigma which often surrounds conversations about our mental health. We need to be more open about discussing mental health issues on any day of the year, but today, the daily struggles of those fighting their own battles is highlighted to us more than ever, and it’s clear how common these issues are.
Using information from sources such as the NHS and MIND (https://www.mind.org.uk/) we thought we’d collate some positive tips which can help improve your wellbeing. Mental health battles are so personal and every person struggling will know that there is no ‘one fix all’ solution to illnesses such as depression and anxiety, but here's some of the Essence of Harris team's top tips that have helped us with our mental health:
- SLEEP is so important for both our physical and mental wellbeing. Sleep helps to regulate the chemicals which are vital in managing our moods and emotions; not getting enough sleep can often lead your mood to dip. Organisations like the Sleep Foundation can help combat issues surrounding getting to sleep, insomnia etc if you need it.
- RELAXATION techniques can help when you’re feeling low. That could mean doing activities like meditation, colouring in or having a bath- simple tasks which can help you to feel less stressed or anxious. Doing something you enjoy, like long walks or playing an instrument can also be so positive for your mental (and physical) well being. Take time for yourself.
- LEARNING something new can be hugely positive for your mental health. Learning a new skill can boost your confidence and your self-esteem. Learning a language, going to a book club, joining a sports club- any skill or activity, big or small, can help boost your mood.
- EXERCISE doesn’t have to mean running a 10K every day! Short walks and more passive activity can still play a vital role in clearing your head, releasing those endorphins and helping you to feel more positive.
- WRITING a mood diary. We thought this was a fantastic idea! By keeping track of your moods, you will be able to spot patterns and see what activities have made you feel positive and which have had a negative impact on you mentally. This can help you to avoid or encourage activities and situations to improve your mental health.
In the chaos of everyday life, with school runs, and jobs and exams, it’s often hard to take a moment to hit the pause button and look after yourself- but we ALL need those moments of calm. Whether your ‘self-care’ is found through playing an instrument, listening to a podcast or simply having a bath, the importance of looking after your mental health shouldn’t be dismissed.
On this World Mental Health Day remember to be kind to yourself, today and every day.