Mental health is something that is thankfully gaining increased recognition. Just like any other aspect of a person’s wellness, taking care of your mental well-being is important. However, taking time to focus on things that increase your mental welfare is often an overlooked aspect of life. We live in a busy world and are often inundated with information, social obligations, work, family, and friends. But it’s critical to take time for yourself.
Sometimes coming up with ways to take care of your mental health can be tricky. Where does a person start when they feel overwhelmed, depressed, or just exhausted? We’ve put together a quick go-to list of six simple activities and practices you can try to help prioritize your mental health.
1. Try something new. Routine is good, but a small change can make a world of difference. Even something small like trying a new restaurant can add a perk to your day.
2. Stay hydrated.Drinking water is not only helpful physically, but also mentally. If you want to be more creative with your water intake, try adding some fruit to your water or even a few mint leaves for a tasty alternative.
3. Write down what you’re grateful for.Often, things can become overwhelming or we might feel a bit hopeless. By writing down what you’re thankful for, you have a list to reflect on when things seem to be going awry. This practice will also help you refocus your mind to look for the positives.
4. Eat some chocolate.Studies show that dark chocolate can improve your mental skills and alertness. So, go ahead and treat yourself to a few pieces of dark chocolate each day!
5. Smile.If you’re feeling anxious or down, even though it might be counter-intuitive, smiling can actually help lift your mood and lower your heart rate.
6. Go outside.Taking a walk, or simply sitting in the sun for at least 15 minutes a day can increase your energy and reduce feelings of depression. Vitamin D is a natural mood booster that many experts recommend.