There has been a great deal of focus given to mental health lately, and that is wonderful because the subject seemed taboo for too long. Professional athletes and Hollywood celebrities have come forward to share their own stories and help shed light on the importance of seeking help when needed. While speaking to a professional counselor is certainly an effective approach to managing long-term issues, some everyday tactics may be just as helpful. Here are four easy ways to improve mental health that most people overlook.
Create a Comfortable Environment
Whether you are at home, at work or traveling, creating a space where you feel safe will go a long way to boosting your psychological well-being. Think about what you can control in each of these instances. At home, surround yourself with calming colors, natural light, plants and scents that elevate your mood. When you are at work, try to eliminate excessive brightness, mute grating noises and place items that remind you of what you love in your line of sight when possible. No matter what type of travel you are doing, dress in loose-fitting clothes, familiarize yourself with your route to lessen anxiety and bring along a happy distraction such as a puzzle book or magazine. In every one of these scenarios, having a comforting fleece fabric to hold onto, sit with or touch may soothe your mind and provide the tranquility you desire.
Force Yourself to Disconnect
Although the thought of putting down your cell phone or shutting off the laptop can feel like it increases your level of stress, the opposite is usually true. Read more about the recommended guidelines for how much time you should engage with your technology and how often you should step away. The brain becomes accustomed to processing multiple images and stimuli simultaneously, and that can tax even the strongest cognitive functions. In addition, the neck and shoulder positions most people assume while browsing or working online can cause pain and soreness that may translate into inner turmoil and unease. Further, the bright screen can negatively impact vision and lead to headaches. There is a definite correlation between feeling well physically and uplifting your spirit.
Incorporate Regular Exercise
The mind-body connection is not limited to how you sit when attached to your favorite device but extends to what you do when you are not. If you are prone to depression or disquietude, then set aside time to participate in some sort of workout. It is not necessary to hit the gym for hours on end unless that is what works for you. Rather, you should find what helps you to unwind. This relaxation might take the form of a walk outside, yoga, meditation or swimming. There are countless ways to activate your body. You can join a local exercise group, find a program to stream or pair up with a buddy and combine movement with a conversation that can also make you feel good and chase away the blues.
Consider a Pet
Not everyone has room in their home for a dog or cat. If you do, then adopting a pet may give you a companion that can bring contentment into your life. It is nice to know there is something alive waiting for your return at the end of the day. Being responsible for another creature can build up self-confidence. Aside from a furbaby, owning a different sort of critter can be equally as satisfying. There is a peacefulness associated with watching a fish float serenely around its tank or a lizard sun itself on a rock. Visit a nearby shelter or look up a website that promotes pets in need of rescue. Saving a life can save your life too.
Whatever problems creep into your mind can be addressed. Reach out to a mental health expert to learn about strategies and resources in your community. Review these suggestions and drench your world in soft materials, placid colors and influences that bring you happiness.