Tip 1 – Be Present
Anxiety is created when we dwell on the past or worry about the future. It’s important to be present in what’s happening right now. That can be harder than it sounds, so here are some things that might help
- Limit social media – pay attention to what you’re doing or who you’re with instead of scrolling through details of others’ lives.
- Try meditation or mindfulness to still your mind
- Take a minute to tune into what you can see, what you can hear, how you feel
Tip 2 – Get out in nature
Exercise boosts serotonin (a happy chemical) in the brain. Sunshine and fresh air also lift your spirits Make it even more beneficial by noticing what’s around you; the sounds of the leaves under your feet, the smell of the air and the sounds of water maybe. Exercise and mindfulness are both great for mental health.
Tip 3 – Take time out
Modern life is busy and sometimes overwhelming. The to-do-list never ends. Your brain needs down-time to process and recharge. So, build in some quiet time; listen to music, have a bath; anything that calms you. This is particularly important before sleep.
Tip 4 – Eat well
What we eat affects how we feel. We wouldn’t run our car on lard and we can’t run our bodies on it either. Eating an unprocessed diet with plenty of fruit and veg is good for our mental as well as physical health.
Tip 5 – Put yourself first
Putting yourself first isn’t selfish – it’s the only way you can be strong enough for others to lean on. You can’t pour from an empty cup so make time for yourself on your schedule. Do something that makes you happy and that’s just for you.
Tip 6 – Think about who you’re spending time with
The people we spend time with can have a massive impact on our mental health. Energy vampires leave you feeling drained, while spending time with positive people will give you more energy. If you’re unable to avoid negative people (family members perhaps) then put some boundaries in place and limit time spent with them if possible. Bear in mind too that your mood rubs off on others, so think about the effect you’re having on your family and friends.
Tip 7 – Practice Gratitude
No matter how your day has gone, there will be some things to be grateful for. Focusing on this, instead of everything that’s gone wrong, will improve your mental health. Instead of moaning about the traffic jam, be grateful you weren’t in the accident that caused it. Try writing a list of everything you have to be thankful for, I bet you’ll be surprised how long it is!
Tip 8 – Tune in
A good way of safeguarding your mental health is to recognise the signs that it needs some attention. When we feel under attack, our brains will try and protect us by helping us to fight back, run away or hide. This shows as anger, anxiety or depression. Look out for signs of stress, so you can do something about it before it spirals out of control.
Tip 9 – Have strategies in place
When you’ve recognised that you’re feeling under stress, it’s a good idea to have some healthy coping mechanisms in place. Instead of reaching for a glass of wine or chocolate donut, can you see a friend, meditate or pick up a favourite hobby? Do something that makes you feel good but is also good for you.
Tip 10 – Forgive yourself
If you do react badly to stress; yell at your kids, down a bottle of wine – forgive yourself! Nobody is perfect and putting pressure on yourself isn’t helpful. Tomorrow is another day!
If you’re interested in improving your mental health this year, check out my website and get in touch to discuss how hypnotherapy can help you. It’s very effective in the treatment of common mental health disorders; such as depression, anxiety, OCD, insomnia and phobias to name a few.