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5 TIPS TO IMPROVE YOUR MENTAL HEALTH AND WELLBEING 

Wellbeing

It is normal to feel down some days and feel like you are going insane in isolation. We all miss our normal life. But there are coping mechanisms you can do to cheer up. Read more to learn 5 tips to improve your mental health!

Words By Jen McDonald

26/02/2020

There is no denying that life is difficult at times. Especially during this pandemic, it is hard to keep sane in isolation. Daily life can stress you out and take a toll on your mental health and well being. Even prior to this pandemic, we have all had days when you hit the snooze button on your alarm, you feel down, and instead of getting up you throw the covers over your head and fall back asleep. 

It is ok to not be okay. If you want to curl up in a ball under the covers and hibernate till 2 pm, then this is okay. There is no right or wrong thing to do when you have bad days, but the key is identifying your trigger points and knowing how to manage them. It is normal to feel trapped, isolated and demotivated at times. Sometimes, you can feel like you are stuck in a black hole unable to get out whilst fighting off a whole army of negative thoughts. This can be physically and mentally draining. Not being able to live a life you once knew, is extremely frustrating and frightening. Even daily activities can be daunting and feel too much. 

It is difficult trying to control your mind when it is going at one hundred miles per hour, and it is hard to shake off that irritated feeling when your head is stuck in the middle of a black cloud. However, the best thing you can do when you have these episodes is to try and stay calm. It is important to remember your thoughts are just thoughts and not reality. Our minds are so powerful, we believe we aren’t in control of what we think because we have thoughts all day long. The truth is, we are in the driving seat and in control. 

Mental health is something we should think about all the time and really invest in, just like with our physical health. We all have the power to live a better life, and by making small changes we hold the key to changing our lives. Just remember that ,no matter how low you feel you are not alone, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. 

Staiy is here to help with 5 small steps that can make a big difference in your life. So why not start today?

teppi

@teppi

1. Try to Staiy positive

This is by far the hardest thing to do, but once you master it you will feel on cloud nine (or close to it). Instead of dwelling on the past or worrying about an uncertain future, try and concentrate on the present. The best way to approach this is to make small changes to your everyday life. If you get a negative thought imagine pulling it out of your head. Puff be gone! Okay, it isn’t that easy, but the chances are you will feel slightly better as you aren’t fixating on it. 

Another way to a happier you is to practice gratitude every day, which can make you feel happier and healthier. Why not start writing down a few things you are grateful for everyday? Take a moment to think and reflect on five good things that happened and made you smile. It doesn’t matter how big or small they are, but by appreciating what you have will help you create a positive mindset. So why not invest in a gratitude journal? Teppi living has the perfect well being journal. 

If a gratitude journal isn’t your thing, there are many mindful apps that can help out. One of the most popular being the Calm app, which helps you relax and refocus your attention. There are also a lot of self-help books out there like Fearne Cotton’s – Speak the truth , Power Hour by Adrienne Herbert or No such thing as normal by Bryony Gordon. These books are all relatable and help you manage mental health, focus on your goals, and feel less stressed in the process.

2. It’s all about routine

Eat, sleep, rest repeat! A routine is so important. Sticking to one helps to keep the mind occupied, making you feel more in control of everything, and helps reduce stress levels. Try to incorporate a schedule into your everyday life. Try and get up at the same time every day, exercise, do activities that make you happy and remember to get a good night’s sleep! Keeping a diary or a planner can keep you on track. This is extremely important and has been proven to work by experts who have experienced long periods of isolation. Most astronauts say sticking to a schedule is the key to dealing with change. If it’s good enough for them then surely it would be good enough for us!

 Getting enough sleep is incredibly important to your health. If you wake up tired, grumpy and spend the daydreaming about sleep…chances are you aren’t getting enough. Always try to have at least 7 hours sleep! If you are finding it difficult to fall asleep why not try a natural sleep spray. The Works carry pillow sprays  that help you fall asleep faster. Simply spray your pillow and you’ll be drifting off to The Land of Nod before you know it! 

@thisworks

@thisworks

3. Staiy connected 

It is heartbreaking not being able to see your friends and family, but it is important that we all stay connected. Belonging is crucial to mental health and we are so grateful for mobile phones and great apps like WhatsApp, FaceTime and Zoom! Setting regular social meetups online or virtual coffee mornings is fun and a great way to see familiar faces. It also gives you a chance to share your thoughts and feelings and get advice if anything is worrying you. You can get as creative as you want and think outside the box! Zoom quizzes are fun and you could even have a girls night over zoom and get dressed up.

@actandbe

4. Exercise is the key

That’s right, move your body people! Physical activity has been shown to be as effective in combating mild to moderate symptoms of depression as medication, so it is important to be active. By releasing those endorphins you will improve your mood and decrease feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress. It will give you a burst of energy throughout the day. If you don’t fancy going outside, you don’t need to. There are lots of influencers online streaming videos on their YouTube channels. 

The body coach Joe Wick’s does great workouts, ranging from 7-minute hit workouts to a 30-minute full body . If high intense workouts don’t tickle your fancy, why not practice yoga? Just 15 minutes of yoga a day can start changing your brain’s chemistry. Julia Bell is a great yoga instructor and her YouTube challenge Julia Bell Yoga will have you relaxed and revived. She does a 10-minute coffee break yoga, so there is no excuse! 

If you are looking for some new yoga gear then you must check out Act and Be. They have a colorful collection of yoga outfits that are all vegan and made entirely from plant fabrics, which feel soft on the skin. Why not try a 30 day yoga challenge? By breathing deeply and doing relaxing yoga poses you are calming your body and mind. Get ready to find your Zen!

5.You time!

Self-care is important to maintain a healthy relationship with yourself. It produces positive feelings and boosts your confidence and self-esteem. So, if you haven’t already joined the self-help club, then put it at the top of your agenda. Make sure you invest in time for yourself to do things that make you happy. Why not have a pamper night to relax and unwind? Run a warm bath, listen to Spotify, put on a Chob face mask, and indulge in a glass of wine to destress your soul. If you want to go the extra mile, why not treat yourself to a pamper pack by Susanne Kaufmann™ & Nove? The kit contains a moisturising mask, rose water mist, stretch mark oil and a cleansing glove. 

If pampering isn’t your thing you can always try other activities, like an adult colouring book. This is a great way to lower levels of anxiety. It is a form of art therapy; it can improve your memory and lift your mood. A simple thing like colouring can make a dramatic difference to your mental health. 

Writing down a list of three goals that you want to achieve within the week and ticking them off is a good way of helping you focus. Remember there are no limits on what you can achieve. Anything is possible if you believe!

Remember, if you are struggling then do not suffer in silence. There is always someone out there to help you be it a friend or family member. If you don’t want to talk to someone close to you then there are helplines which can offer advice. Iasp is a great website that lists phone numbers of organisations that can help in Europe and the UK.