Taking Care of your Mental Health
Mental health includes emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, act, make choices, and relate to others. It is understandable to feel scared, anxious or helpless. Whatever situation you are in and wherever you are, you need to know that you have the power to look after your mental health and well-being.
Exercising regularly can boost your self-esteem and increase concentration and improve sleep. Through exercise, there will be a reduction in the body’s levels of stress hormones - adrenaline and cortisol. Exercise also keeps the brain and your other vital organs healthy. Try incorporating physical activity you find enjoyable into your routine.
Sports clubs, working out with friends, and other team activities are also good opportunities for social interaction. You can always start small and work your way up! Learning what you enjoy is just another form of getting to know yourself better, so have fun with it!
Do Things You Enjoy
Continue doing things you find meaningful and enjoyable. This could be something as simple as colouring, playing with your pet, or even watching your favourite films or TV series. Having a regular routine with activities that make you feel happy can help you maintain good mental health and also improves your stress response.
It's completely normal to feel like quitting right after you start something new. Turning something into a new habit or routine takes practice and time. Never give up on yourself and keep trying. You aren't obligated to do the same things forever. If something doesn't work for you, dabble in other things instead! The world is your oyster after all, don't be afraid to start something new as many times as you'd like.
Talking to someone you trust, be it a friend, family member, or even a colleague can help your mental health. Socialising is a vital part of being human, and staying connected can go a long way. You may feel better if you are able to openly share what you are going through with someone who cares about you. As the saying goes, “A problem shared is a problem halved”.
A balanced and nutritious diet with sufficient water can improve your energy and keep you focused throughout the day. Even the act of cooking could take your mind off stress. People commonly find themselves either eating more than usual, or less than usual when they are dealing with prolonged stress.
In either case, poor diet during periods of stress and depression only makes matters worse. Albeit vicious, this cycle can still be overcome. Aim to eat plenty of fruits and vegetables along with foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon. Dark green leafy vegetables in particular are brain protective. Nuts, seeds and legumes, such as beans and lentils, are also excellent brain foods.
Self-care looks different for everyone, and it is important to find what works for you without it feeling like a chore. It may require some trial and error to discover what works best for you. Throughout this process, remember to treat yourself with kindness and respect, and avoid self-criticism. Take a step back for your mental health. Just so you know, you are never alone.
We care for you. Love, Kuvings
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