There is no easy way to figure out how best to care for your mental health. For those who are looking to improve their mental wellness in the New Year, it might seem daunting and even overwhelming if you don’t know how to approach self-care and mental wellness.
From societal to environmental and even genetic factors, a variety of things influence us and can take a toll on an individual’s mental health. The expectations thrust upon ourselves and by society also add to our day-to-day stress. These obligations and duties may become so overwhelming that sometimes an individual ends up crumbling under them.
As Dr Ramon Llamba, PhD in Quantum Physics and the founder of Golden Age Transformation says, the greatest barriers to living a better life are your self-created, overgrown expectations. She has penned down some strategic steps which can be taken to take control of your mental health.
Give yourself importance
Self-care is the new empowerment. While we grapple with the growing mental health crisis, it is high time that we prioritise self-love and self-compassion. As most of the psychology studies attest, self-love along with compassion is the key to strong mental health.
Practicing self-love is not about being self-absorbed or being narcissistic, it is following a subtle way to get in touch with your inner self, your happiness, and your well-being. It is basically the act of looking after yourself, both physically and mentally, so you are able to push through your limiting beliefs and live a life that truly shines.
So, do yourself a favour, just take a deep breath, give yourself a little hug and start practicing the art of self-love.
Take a break
No matter how many lists you make or goals you set, things are still going to get stressful and busy. It is scientifically proven that hitting the pause button in your life has some incredible health benefits that far outweigh anything you think you might miss out on.
Trust us, you’ll feel refreshed which will ultimately double your productivity. That said, if you still can’t take time out to fly on a vacation, there are things you can do even in the most jam-packed days, like incorporating mindfulness. Try to absorb the idea of being in the present by taking a break from all the distractions with a kind heart and an open mind. You can incorporate mindfulness in your daily activities by bringing a wave of awareness and compassion to the things that you are already occupied with, such as during your commute or gym-time or even while eating a meal. Devoting a few moments to fully focus on a task at hand (mind you, you have to put all other thoughts away) can work wonders for your mental health.
You can try beginning each day with a five-minute mindfulness meditation session. If you find it helpful and want to go further then you can choose to opt for therapy to unravel a lifelong pattern, hire a personal trainer, or make time for reading.
Exercising may be the last thing you want to do when you’re down or feeling overly stressed, but experts agree that exercising is one of the finest yet most powerful ways to boost your mental health. It is imperative to exercise for 15 to 30 minutes, three days a week in order to manage stress and anxiety.
Sure, working out can be time-consuming, but your chosen form of exercise doesn’t necessarily have to be physical, it can be an emotional and spiritual one too. When people think of exercise, they only consider going to the gym or doing some in-house cardio. Be that as it may, the way to mental wellness is to establish a mind-body connection: be sure to pay attention to your spiritual, mental, and emotional counterparts, too.
Your mental health is dependent on all these four elements, together. Try to understand this in the form of trickle-down effect: The physical body is often affected by the sudden play of emotions, our thoughts are directly proportionate to how we feel, and it is our energy level which sways our mind and ultimately our thoughts.
You can fully access the spiritual aspect of your being by maintaining a daily connection with your soul.
Tell yourself something positive
An adjustment to your everyday vocabulary, both in your thoughts and saying out aloud can very well improve your mental health. It may sound trite to you but looking on the bright side of everything really does matter. Instead of always focusing on the negative side, flip your dialogue towards positive outcomes. In addition to keeping up with positive mental health, it will also keep you motivated. For example, rather than saying, ‘If I bag that job’, switch to, ‘When I bag that job.’ These small changes in your language will do the deal for you and change your mindset to a glass half full instead of glass half empty. Understand this as a fact that when you perceive yourself and your life negatively, you end up viewing experiences particularly in a way that confirms the very same notion. When you start using positive words instead, you are more likely to promote feelings of self-worth and personal power.
Prioritise mental well-being
Mental health awareness is good. It’s important to be aware of something that affects nearly a quarter of the population of this world. Basically, someone experiencing a mental health problem or going through a mental crisis may not even realise this and may need help and assistance to even accept they have an issue that requires dealing with. There is no shame in seeking professional help in times of need. You can find yourself a therapist who is variably proactive to patiently listen and give you tools that will help.
It is time that you be accountable for prioritising your mental well-being.
Dr Ramon Llamba holds a Ph.D. in Quantum Physics and is a leading Business and Life Coach. Views expressed are personal.