There is a saying, “we’re only given as much as we can handle”. But what about those times when we are challenged and feel that the weight of the world is on our shoulders? Are we paying enough attention to our daily mental health so that when we are challenged we can rise to the occasion and push through those challenges that test us?
It seems to cycle through the news all too often, the discussion of mental health and well being. However, as individuals are we giving enough of our attention to building our own strong mental health? Should this be included in our own conversations more often?
The assumption could be that we all think we know how to take care of ourselves. Eat right, get plenty of sleep, exercise, right?
Maybe the question should be not ARE we but HOW do we take care of our mental health? Here are 9 Do’s & Don’ts for better mental health:
1. Do take care of your body
Your physical well-being is a vital key when moving towards positive mental health. It’s imperative to include several components throughout the day. A healthy well balanced diet is imperative. But don’t forget your water, the benefits are plentiful and if you deny your body water you can potentially experience headaches and lethargy.
2. Do Not use tobacco products or consume too much sugar or caffeine
We’ve all read multiple reports on why tobacco is bad for our health. And those comfort foods, sure they are tempting, but after consuming them we usually don’t end up with feelings of comfort, only guilt and some serious bloating.
3. Do start a “stress journal”
Understanding what triggers your stress may help you get a handle on your particular situation and help you assess the environment and other factors that act as a stress trigger. Once you are able to identify these triggers you may better learn how to adapt and handle the situation. Start by recording your thoughts and feelings about any particular situation you have or may be experiencing.
4. Do Not focus on “what could have been”
Moving forward is a much healthier plan. Focusing on things that have already happened or things that are out of your control usually prove to be futile. The universe did not conspire against you. Truly.
5. Do something you love to do
Engaging in activities that you are good at helps build your mental strength. Participating in activities that you love and/or are good at helps you achieve a sense of success and can boost your self-esteem level.
6. Do Not overload your calendar
Even though we live is such a busy world, it’s important to space out activities and take that much needed time for yourself. Review your daily and monthly activities. Are there things that you can cut out or at least cut down?
7. Do utilize positive self talk
Instead of saying to yourself “I can’t do this” reframe your thoughts into a phrase that allows you to focus on a more positive note. Change it to “I will do the best I can”.
8. Do Not focus on perfection
There is no perfect human being, we all make mistakes. Instead think that practice makes progress. We can learn from our mistakes and move forward, changing or adapting the way we do things.
9. Do consider trying meditation or yoga
Meditation is like exercise for our brains, assisting with our daily mental health maintenance. While some think yoga is just another exercise fad, it’s been around for about 5000 years and integrates mental, physical and spiritual elements.
Are you on the path to better mental health? What has worked best for you? Share your thoughts with us here.