Daily Self-Care Gives Your Mental Health a Boost
There are a lot of things people do every day to take care of their physical health. You can eat healthy foods, exercise, and get plenty of sleep. But even beyond that, a lot of people pick up other daily habits that protect their body, such as taking medication and applying sunscreen. Others take it a step further, engaging in activities that benefit their whole health, such as yoga. Taking care of your physical self is important, but what have you done today in an effort to support your mental health?
What Is Mental Health?
When we talk about mental health, we are talking about how we feel about ourselves and how we relate to the world. Your mental health determines how you make and keep friendships and relationships. It also contributes to how well we learn from others in our lives and how we use what we learn to develop psychologically and emotionally.
When your mental health is poor, you may feel anxious, worried, depressed, or numb enough that it interferes with your abilities to carry on with your everyday responsibilities. Chronic stress -- often associated with work -- can lead to unhealthy coping mechanisms, including drinking alcohol. Those struggling with their mental health might avoid even the most basic self-care practices, including eating healthy meals, exercising, and getting enough sleep.
Mental health is your emotional, cognitive, and behavioral well-being. When a person is free from mental health issues, they are in a state where they can easily cope with the normal stresses of life. They are able to work productively and feel like they are truly making a contribution to their community. Furthermore, they relate with others and are able to practice empathy.
In the same way you do those little daily rituals that help with the upkeep of your physical health, there are ways you can support your mental health. Consider adding a few of these helpful suggestions to maintain optimal mental health every day.
Care for Your Body
There are some surprising ways that your physical health can affect your mental health. For instance, did you know that the health of your gut can affect your overall mood? Serotonin naturally boosts your mood, and it is found in your gut. In order to keep serotonin levels high, make sure to take probiotics, limit intake of antibiotics, and eat plenty of yogurt and kefir.
Another way to boost your mental health is to keep your mouth healthy. Poor dental health has been linked to depression. Make sure to schedule regular checkups and don’t delay any necessary dental work.
Believe it or not, chores can do a whole lot more than making your house look great. Keeping your home and other areas clean and tidy is good for your mental health. Researchers have found correlations between cluttered homes and feelings of depression and anxiety in the inhabitants. Meanwhile, a clean and organized home acts as a refuge from the world where you can recharge and relax so you’re ready for another day.
There’s a reason some of the world’s most successful people meditate every day. Meditation trains your brain to focus and remain in the present. This training makes it easier to handle the things in our lives that can cause stress and negative feelings. People who meditate are better able to deal with pressure and rise above it to reach their goals. Make meditation a priority by dedicating a room in your home to the practice. It doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive. Simply incorporate calming colors, sounds, and natural light. Then, be intentional about utilizing the space daily, as well as anytime you are feeling stressed.
In today’s materialistic world, we are bombarded with media showing us advertisements for products we don’t need and celebrities with lavish lifestyles we’ll never have. It’s important to be thankful for what we do have. Practicing gratitude is one of the simplest, yet most effective, ways to boost your mental health. It makes you patient in a world that is obsessed with instant gratification. It improves your relationships, sleep, and diet. Gratitude is effective if you’re battling depression. When you live your life thankful for all the things you have while not giving those things you don’t have any mind, you create a lasting happiness and self-satisfaction that is a hallmark of good mental health.
All those little things you do for your physical health are great for your mental health, as well. But most of us could do a little more to protect our cognitive and emotional well-being. Maintaining a tidy home means you have a place where you can feel comfortable and rest easy. Meditation is a popular habit many successful people use for their mental health. Finally, practicing gratitude helps establish lasting happiness in your life.