Since the onset of the pandemic, it seems that the importance of mental health support has finally come to the forefront of society.
People are being more open about their mental state and seeking support to help with their challenges.
But struggling with mental health looks different for everyone. While one person might benefit from speaking to a professional, another may just need to tweak their life to uplift their mood.
The most important part of dealing with mental health issues is taking the first steps toward addressing them. If you find that you are struggling with your mood and your stress level, try these quick tips to give yourself the boost you need:
1. Avoid the News
Or at least avoid the news as much as possible. Nowadays it seems so easy to get caught up in the latest happening around the world but sometimes it creates unneeded negativity in your life.
Check out the news at a certain time of day to stay in the know but don’t let yourself fall down the rabbit hole of constantly checking headlines and obsessing over what is going on.
Yes, it’s important to know what is going on in the world but ultimately, if there is nothing you can do about it, don’t let it affect your mental health.
2. Make a Face-to-Face Connection
COVID-19 really put a damper on having a social life so it’s important now more than ever to nurture your social connections. The best way to do this is to meet someone face-to-face.
Go for a coffee or have a video chat if you can’t get out. There’s something uplifting about seeing a person’s expression as you speak!
Talking on the phone is great but face-to-face connections foster a real sense of connection to other people.
3. Get Enough Sleep
This is easier said than done for most parents, but adequate sleep is crucial for your overall health – even your mental health.
Start by establishing a calming bedtime routine for both you and your children. Also, aim to get to bed at a decent time to ensure you get enough z’s.
Plus, there’s nothing wrong with grabbing a nap during the day if you need it!
4. Do Something Creative
If you find yourself feeling down, try to do something creative! Activating the creative side of your brain can give you an immediate boost.
Grab a coloring book, write a poem, or even do a puzzle.
Tapping into your creative side is a great way to express yourself and improve your mental health.
5. Learn Something New
You can also keep your brain active by learning something new. There are many free online courses you can take on a variety of topics.
However, if you don’t have the time to dedicate to a course, Google some interesting facts or watch an educational video on YouTube.
By keeping your brain in good shape, you can better address negative emotions and return to a peaceful state.
6. Write Down What You Are Thankful For
Keeping a gratitude list helps to rewire the brain to automatically think pleasant thoughts. Increase your overall positivity by focusing on what you are grateful for.
This is also a great exercise for self-reflection and expression.
Every day, try to write down something you are thankful for. You don’t even have to keep a journal – just jot it down on a piece of paper!
7. Give Help to Others
Altruistic acts like helping a friend or donating to a cause help to strengthen the sense of connection we have to other people and will immediately boost your mood!
You don’t have to crazy either – find an online charity you can donate to, treat a friend who is down to a cup of coffee, or donate unused items to a family in need.
Helping others also helps you connect with a bigger meaning in life.
8. Listen to Music
Music is the ultimate form of expression and reminds us that although we have individual challenges, we all have challenges nonetheless.
You can listen to something with an upbeat vibe and positive message to lift your mood or throw on a lamenting tune that perfectly describes your situation.
Overall, music can improve your overall health by helping you sleep better, reducing your stress, and increasing your motivation.
9. Do Something Fun
When your mental health tanks, it can be hard to get up and do something fun. However, sometimes you have to fake it until you make it, and engaging in a fun activity may just give you the boost you need!
Find something to do that excites you or makes you laugh. This can be something as simple as grabbing your kids and imitating a TikTok dance or calling a friend who knows how to make you laugh.
Even some funny cat videos are fun to watch!
10. Get Some Fresh Air
Being outside in nature has an inarguably restorative effect on both the mind and the body. Studies have shown that individuals who live near green spaces suffer from fewer diseases and disorders.
To enjoy the benefits of fresh air, you don’t have to go on a full-day hike or spend hours on the beach. A quick walk around the block or even sitting outside on your doorstep is enough to boost your mental health!
11. Pamper Yourself
When you’re struggling mentally, it’s important to take care of yourself. This is why the idea of self-care has become such a huge thing in recent years!
You can easily fit self-care activities into your busy schedule. Get up a little earlier in the morning to enjoy a warm cup of tea or stay up a bit later to soak in a hot bath.
When you care enough to treat yourself well, you’ll notice yourself becoming calmer on the inside and your stress melting away.
A huge thing that can negatively affect mental health is being in a constant state of busyness. Meditation is a great way to practice being still and quiet, allowing you to better cope with the challenges in your life.
There are many great videos on YouTube to help get you started or you can simply sit comfortably in a quiet room and let your thoughts come and go. Try not to dwell on your thoughts and instead let them drift by.
13. Repeat an Affirmation
Affirmations are short statements you can say to yourself in order to rewire your brain for positive thinking. You can post them around your mirror and repeat them every day to boost your confidence and self-esteem.
Think of things you want to be true of yourself or things you want to accomplish. Examples of affirmations include:
- I love myself and am worthy of love.
- I am in charge of my life.
- I am resilient and can get through anything.
- I am proud of who I am.
14. Drink Water
For a quick mental health boost, grab a glass of water! There is a scientific connection between anxiety and drinking water and drinking more will lower your risk of anxiety and depression.
Boost your water intake by keeping a bottle of water near you at all times. You can also eat water-rich fruits and vegetables to keep yourself hydrated.