Self-Care for the Christmas Season
Attitudes towards the state of mental health over the last few years have changed a lot, and 2021 is no exception. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been more focus on our states of mind than ever before.
If you feel you’ve been struggling with your mental health, this week’s guest writer, George Newton, shares some essential ways to bring yourself back down to the ground and reset how you’re feeling.
1. Engage in light exercise regularly
Lockdown restrictions and being forced to stay at home have made it more difficult for many of us to stay active over the last year. However, studies consistently show that getting outdoors and moving our bodies does wonder for our mental state.
Whether it’s running, walking, or taking part in a workout or yoga session, keeping our minds and bodies active is a simple way to nurture a healthy state of mind.
Consider allocating a bit of time into your calendar each week to leave your phone at home and take yourself for a walk around the block - prioritizing this time to get some fresh air, enjoy gentle exercise and give your mind a rest from work, family and social commitments will enable you to find some headspace to focus on what you need.
2. Find the right social balance for you
Unfortunately, staying at home more has meant we’ve become less connected with our friends and family, and more of us are feeling the loneliness that can come from this. However, while social media exists, it’s not a proper substitute for that all-important human connection and thankfully with restrictions starting to ease, this enables us to reach out to those we care about in person, for the first time in a long time.
While we’ve been so used to connecting with others online during the pandemic, be mindful of striking the right social balance for you, in terms of ensuring you’re getting enough time for your own self-care, connecting with people you care about online and in-person where possible - it’s also important to be aware of your digital technology habits. If you’re feeling lonely, try to manage these emotions by speaking to someone you trust, or reaching out to a professional who can help you.
It’s important to create healthy boundaries that empower you to have time to yourself while spending time with people you care about.
3. Spend your downtime doing things you love
With some restrictions on travel and working from home still in place, why not use the time to learn something new or practice a hobby you love?
It could be something therapeutic like drawing or getting creative, reading, or writing down your thoughts and feelings in a journal. If you aren’t feeling too creative, try something practical like organizing your cupboards or clearing out your wardrobe - this can feel rather therapeutic and helps to create a sense of cleansing, removing items that no longer serve you.
Dedicating even a small amount of time to learning a new skill, organizing, or doing something more relaxing like reading will keep your brain engaged while allowing you to switch off from any worries in your work, personal life, or in the wider news.
Be kind to yourself
Everyone deals with stresses and worries in different ways and in uncertain times, there is no right or wrong way to feel.
During unsettling times in particular, it’s so important to take a step back and check-in with yourself. Try not to feel like you have to keep up with what everyone else is doing and instead, do as much or as little as you are comfortable with - go at a pace that works for you.
If you’re feeling fatigued with everything going on in the world, then consider taking a positive step towards focusing on resetting your mind. I hope the steps outlined above can help you to get started.
Original source: 3 Ways To Reset Your Mental Health