Mental health impacts overall health and quality of life. Mental health encompasses emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how you think, feel, act, make choices, and relate to others. Self-care can play a prominent role in maintaining mental health, and help support treatment and recovery in individuals diagnosed with a mental illness. In simple terms, self-care means taking the time to do things that help you live well and improve both your physical health and mental health. When it comes to mental health, self-care can help manage stress, reduce the risk of illness, and boost energy.
Here are ten tips to nurture and boost mental wellbeing –
- Practice Self-Care – Engage in activities that bring joy and relaxation. This could include hobbies, reading, listening to music, spending time in nature, and practicing mindfulness and meditation.
- Prioritize Sleep – Getting an adequate amount of sleep is important for both mental and physical health. Stick to a schedule and make sure you are getting enough sleep. Aim for 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night. Establish a bedtime routine and create a sleep-friendly environment to improve the quality of your sleep.
- Exercise Regularly – Physical activity is known to have numerous mental health benefits. Whether it is going to the gym, practicing yoga, dancing, or simply taking a walk, engage in regular exercise. Just 30 minutes of exercise every day can help reduce stress, improve mood, and boost overall wellbeing.
- Maintain a Balanced Diet – Following a balanced diet can improve your energy and focus throughout the day. Include plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats in your meals. Avoid excessive consumption of sugary, caffeinated beverages and processed foods as they can negatively impact your mood and energy levels.
- Maintain Social Connections – Cultivate meaningful relationships with family, friends, and community. Social connections provide support, a sense of belonging, and can help alleviate feelings of loneliness or isolation. Keep aside time for social activities, reach out to loved ones, and seek support if required.
- Manage Stress – Stress is an inevitable part of everyone’s life. Develop healthy coping mechanisms to manage stress effectively. This may include deep breathing exercises, practicing mindfulness, engaging in relaxation techniques, or pursuing activities that help you unwind.
- Limit Screen Time – Excessive screen time (particularly on social media) can negatively impact mental health. Set boundaries on your screen usage, take breaks, and engage in activities that don’t involve screens to promote a healthier relationship with technology.
- Practice Gratitude – Cultivate a mindset of gratitude by focusing on the positive aspects of your life. This can change your perspective towards life and enhance overall wellbeing.
- Set Realistic Goals – Set healthy and realistic boundaries in your personal and professional life. Aim high, but be realistic and don’t over-schedule. Overcommitting yourself can lead to stress and burnout. Prioritize your individual needs and wellbeing by allocating time for self-care and relaxation.
- Seek Support –If you are struggling with your mental health, don’t hesitate to seek professional help. Reach out to a therapist, counsellor, or mental health professional who can provide guidance, support, and appropriate interventions. Also, reach out to your friends or family members who can provide emotional support.
Self-care strategies for mind and the body can be different for everyone and it is important to find what you need and enjoy. Understanding what causes or triggers your symptoms and what coping techniques works best for you can help you take steps to improve your mental health.