6 ways to care for your mental health
Learning to care for mental health can help you enjoy life more and appreciate the things around you. It can also help you maintain good relationships with people. Here are six ways to look after your mental well-being.
1. Talk to someone you trust
When you’re feeling down or something is troubling you, it’s best to seek support from someone you trust. Talking to someone about the things that are weighing you down can make a difference in how you feel. Opening up to another individual can help you look at your situation in a different way or even help you find ideal solutions.
Not all people find it easy to start a conversation about their feelings or problems. So how do you get started? Find the right opportunity for CONVERSATION or you can initiate it by inviting the person to talk somewhere you will not be interrupted. In these times of pandemic, it doesn’t have to be face-to-face. You can talk via phone, chat, or video call.
You can begin by sharing the things that are troubling you and describing how you feel. Let the person know if you want their help, advice, or just want someone to listen.
After talking to someone and you feel that you didn’t get the support you need, don’t give up. Keep trying until you find the right person who can help you.
2. Pay attention to your physical health
When you make an effort to take care of yourself physically, it can boost your mental health. Exercising at least 30 minutes a day keeps your body and brain healthy. According to WebMD, doing regular exercises release chemicals called endorphins which trigger a positive feeling in your body.
Jenny, 35 years old, says that brisk walking at dawn gives her a natural high. Witnessing the dark sky change to blue and seeing the sun say hello to the world relaxes her senses.
Good physical health plays a significant role in your psychological health. When you have access to quality healthcare services, it can help you maintain a healthier well-being.
3. Engage in activities that you enjoy
Work and personal responsibilities can be overwhelming at times. We all need a break to maintain good mental health. Engaging in activities that you enjoy can help ease the stress and give you something to look forward to. It can be as simple as reading a book, listening to your favorite music, watching a movie, baking, journaling, or doing arts and crafts.
Lester, 27 years old, works five times a week in a bank. After a long day at work, he looks forward to going home and playing with his pug named Pluto. Taking his dog out for a walk around the village after dinner helps put him at ease.
4. Spend two minutes focusing on your surroundings
When you feel overwhelmed by your worries and problems, the World Health Organization (WHO) suggests taking a two-minute pause. Begin by taking three slow deep breaths. Allow your feet to slowly press on the ground and stretch your arms. Focus on your surroundings:
Name five things that you see.
Identify four things that you hear.
Describe what you smell.
What does it feel like to touch your knees or something else within your reach? Describe how it feels underneath your fingers.
5. Stay away from harmful chemicals
Don’t use alcohol, tobacco, or drugs as an escape from your problems. Drinking alcohol, smoking, or taking drugs may make you feel better but this feeling is short-lived. As the pleasure fades, you are often left feeling worse. These dangerous chemicals can increase the risk of diseases and injuries to you and the people around you.
6. Seek professional help
If you feel that you can no longer handle the stress that you are going through, it’s advisable to seek professional help. You can get in touch with your local mental health helpline. In the Philippines, you can call the National Mental Health Crisis Hotline. You may also consult your doctor or talk to a counselor. Whatever challenges you are going through, remember that you are not alone. There are people who are always willing to support your mental well-being.