As the outer world seems to become more hectic each day, and for some even feels as though it’s closing in. The saying, “go within so you won’t have to go without” seems to resonate with so many during these very unusual times. It’s never been more vital to look inward. Start making it a habit to listen to your heart, and learn how to nurture your mind. Improving your mental health is an investment for life, so why not read on for some tips to get you started?
1. Know, and love thyself. Understand that you are a child of the God who needs to be cherished, and treat yourself accordingly. Ask yourself: what do I need today in order to thrive? For some this feels selfish but trust that if you don’t take care to put yourself first, you will not be available to help others. Try finding out what your love language is, and love yourself in that way. In other words, DO YOU! If you value time alone, take it. If laughter lifts your spirit, take the time to listen to comedy. If your heart feels warmed by words of affirmation, write little positive messages for yourself each day. Making these things part of your daily habit routine should greatly improve your quality of life.
"Write little positive messages to yourself: love notes for you, by you."
2. Take time to unwind. We humans are simple creatures, and modern lifestyles can feel overwhelming and ask too much of us at times. So it’s absolutely valid to give yourself time to just breathe now and then. Set a period of time aside each day that’s just for you and whatever you’d like to do to relax: meditation & prayer, journaling, a hot bath, listening to music, reading a good book or any other wellness activity.
3. Make a safe space and time for yourself.
Preserve your peace of mind by saying no to distractions and stressors and even people. Limit your news and social media intake, set healthy boundaries in your relationships, and learn to say “no” when your plate’s gotten too full. Save some room for yourself to live happily and authentically. No one can or should be mad at you for choosing you.
4. Keep in touch.
Staying connected to healthy habit sources and getting lots of support is absolutely crucial to keeping mentally fit. It’s important to cultivate a strong support system, a small crew of trusted allies to see you through the ups and downs of life or just to make you laugh. Socializing, distanced or otherwise can insulate you from stress, loneliness, and all kinds of mental and physical ailments.
5. Seek help. Don’t be afraid to reach out to a professional! Shop around and find the right therapist for you, or get involved in group therapy. You may even have a wise mentor or close friend that you can talk to. You could also contact a mental health warmline, a telephone service for anyone who just wants to talk about their daily struggles. No matter what kind of problem you’re dealing with, there are solutions out there. Take advantage of them and be well.
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"If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together" - African proverb