10 things you can do every week to boost your mental wellbeing
We all have mental health just as we have physical health and we will all have times when we will struggle with our mental wellbeing just as we might have physical health issues.
After the last year, it is no surprise that we have found it difficult and many of us may be suffering with our mental wellbeing more than usual which is natural when we are going through change and uncertainty.
As it is mental health awareness week, I wanted to share my top 10 tips of small things you can build into your routine each week to support your mental wellbeing:
Do some physical activity - being active is so good for our mental wellbeing and building into our day a little more movement can really support our mental health. Try to take short breaks throughout the day where you stand up and move around or even doing some desk exercises.
Spend some time in nature - the theme of this weeks Mental Health Awareness Week is nature and being amongst nature promotes a feeling of happiness, improves our mood and helps us feel more relaxed. Being outside also gives us a vitamin D boost!
Get a good nights sleep - sleep is so important for our wellbeing and a bad nights sleep can impact our mood and energy levels. Try to improve your sleep by reducing caffeine in the evening, putting away technology 30 minutes before you go to sleep and doing something that relaxes you before you go to bed.
Connect with a friend or family member - feeling connected to others helps with our self esteem and lowers our anxiety levels. Regularly reaching out to those close to us can really help our mental wellbeing especially when we are struggling or feeling down.
Have some technology free time - being connected 24/7 can be over whelming and doesn’t allow us to be present and in the moment. ‘Unplugging’ ourselves even just for a short amount of time each day can allow us to do something else we enjoy or spend more quality time with others.
Watch something that makes you laugh - we’ve all heard the phrase ‘laughter is the best medicine’. Laughing makes us feel good, helps us have a positive and optimistic outlook and we can’t feel anxious or sad when we are laughing.
Practise gratitude - when we regularly reflect upon things we are thankful for we experience more positive emotions. Writing down weekly what you are grateful for or what has gone well that, starting the day with a positive thought or showing your thanks to someone else will help us focus on what we have instead of what we lack.
Do something creative - anything that focusses the mind or takes us into a sense of ‘flow’ has a calming effect on our brain and can take our mind off anything that might be worrying us. Colouring, sewing, painting, singing, gardening or baking all act as a form of meditation and can increase feel good chemicals in our body.
Take some deep breaths - taking 3 deep breaths (breathing in for 3 seconds and breathing out for 3 seconds) and connecting the body and breath can bring us back to the here and now where we can feel calm, grounded and safe.
Talk kindly to yourself - too often we are our own worst critic and we think very negatively about ourselves. When you find yourself having negative thoughts, stop these thoughts and reframe to talk to yourself as you would to someone you love.
If you would like to talk through how we can support your organisation and your teams please do get in touch with our Director of Wellbeing, Gemma Carter-Morris on firstname.lastname@example.org
Gemma Morris, Director of Wellbeing, Next Steps Consulting