As we approach the end of Mental Health Awareness Month, let’s take a look at some good mental health tips that will nurture our well-being for the long haul.
All of us struggle with our mental health from time to time. As we take precautions to preserve our overall health and build strength, let’s do the same for our mental health to maintain it and prepare for the days when it could be vulnerable.
9 Mental Health Tips
- Write about your emotions
- Don’t put on a happy face
- Quit overthinking
- Do what helps you
- Immerse yourself in empowering content
- Go easy on yourself
- Keep close to your true friends
- Practice mindfulness
- Respect yourself
1. Write about your emotions
A great habit to develop is to write about your emotions, especially the overwhelming ones. This not only helps in letting off the weight but also in understanding ourselves.
Looking at those words, later on, will help in recognizing the way that you think and approach a situation. In my case, journaling has helped me realize the transient nature of things. No matter how bad a time gets or how long it stretches, it eventually passes.
Sometimes I would read what I wrote a week ago and realize that I didn’t even remember what I was worried sick about back then.
In addition to this, you can keep a gratitude journal to note down all the things that go well on shiny or stormy days.
2. Don’t put on a happy face
Yep, don’t do it. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t try to make yourself feel better, but to stop pretending, numbing, or subsiding your pain. Being strong does not mean that you don’t let stuff get to you, it’s about how you deal and grow from it.
One of my best friends lost his father to COVID recently and when I asked him if he had let out his tears, he said that he couldn’t because his mother would become weaker seeing him crumble. That scared me. Going through this terrible tragedy and having to hold it in would be so taxing.
Embrace the sadness that you feel. It is a part of life. There’s no need to pretend that you’re okay when you’re not.
Related: How to Experience True Happiness?
3. Quit overthinking
This is one of the hard ones, I know. Overthinking is a horrible habit that many of us practice in our day-to-day lives. I say “practice” because we can let go of it.
Ruminating over the past misfortunes and mistakes, fearing what could go wrong, doubting yourself, all of these things don’t help us.
Recently, I was overthinking relentlessly if a particular person was upset with me. I kept thinking and thinking until I remembered a tip that I wrote in How to Stop Overthinking - 7 Helpful Tips which was to hold myself accountable. I suddenly asked myself, “What proof do you have to support this claim?” I had none, and suddenly I relaxed.
Turned out, no one was upset with me. What a waste of energy… But thankfully, I learned a great trick that I’ll apply until I overcome this nasty habit.
4. Do what helps you
These are the habits that will always be helpful for you.
Some are relevant to everyone such as eating healthy, exercising regularly, taking breaks from social media, resting well, keeping a balance between personal and professional life, etc.
And, some are unique to you. You know what works for you best. Activities that are therapeutic for you, for example, painting, listening to your favorite playlist, driving, reading, going through old photo albums, cuddling with your pet, bike around your city, swimming, staring at the sky, or simply doing nothing.
Keep doing these activities regularly to keep your mental health nourished with care.
5. Immerse yourself in empowering content
You know that feeling after watching a really inspiring video, a thought-provoking quote, some deeply impactful words. It’s great, isn’t it? Most times, we stumble upon content like this. Let’s not put it to chance all the time, but make efforts to stay connected to the content that empowers good mental health.
Subscribe to helpful blogs, Instagram accounts, subreddits, Facebook groups, inspiring songs and movies, YouTube channels, books, workshops, etc.
Make sure that you have things to lift you when you get down. Content like this not only serves as a spark to your day but also something that can give you hope during tough times.
We have Daily Zen in the Gratitude app for this very purpose. Quotes, affirmations, blogs, real-life stories, gratitude cards, and tips to think better updated daily for you to always have something that shines the light of good thoughts.
Related: Here are 20 Quotes to Make Your Day
6. Don’t be too hard on yourself
We all make mistakes.
No one knows everything.
We’re all learning and growing at our pace.
Not every day is going to be perfectly productive.
Sometimes you might say the wrong words.
Some criticism is good for us, but not if we take it as a personal failure.
We are only human.
This does not mean that we are not responsible to have good behavior and do the best we can, but that when we do fall short despite good intentions, we should forgive ourselves.
Also, limit how much multi-tasking that you do. Taking more on your plate than you can handle might give results in the short term, but making it a part of your lifestyle is not beneficial. Take breaks, keep it light, and work as a human.
7. Keep close to your true friends
Friendship is perhaps the greatest blessing in life. Having people that you trust and feel understood is a beautiful feeling.
As time goes by, distance and other priorities might become a factor that reduces how much we used to spend time with our friends, but let’s do our best to keep in touch and be there for each other.
Talking to friends and letting them know about what’s going in our lives makes it a shared experience and reduces the amount of strain that we would have to go through alone.
Also, their perspective helps in sorting between real problems and wrongly assumed ones. Their support empowers us on the days when we’re not so sure about ourselves. And, their humor makes our hearts sparkle.
8. Practice mindfulness
According to Mindful, mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us.
It is to be where you are, to focus on your body, feel your breath, and notice your thoughts. Your thoughts might wander, and that’s okay. What matters is for you to bring yourself back to the present moment.
Mindfulness is a way to train and control our attention. It is for the mind and body to be in the same place.
9. Respect yourself
I read recently that we must be careful of how much we tolerate because that is teaching the other person how to treat us. Don’t let politeness get in the way of being respectful to yourself. Be clear about how something makes you feel. It doesn’t have to be rude, but it has to make your point clear.
As you take care of others, take care of yourself too. You deserve to have your boundaries appreciated. You deserve to be treated well, by others and yourself.
Take a look at how you talk to yourself. You wouldn’t be so happy with someone talking to you in a demeaning way, right? Make sure to apply that on yourself too.
And, that’s all! These were 9 habits for you to improve your mental health and nurture it for life. Some of these habits might not have sounded like habits per se, but if we see them that way then they become implementable. Let’s do the best for ourselves.
I wish you a marvelous day!