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How To Start Prioritising Your Mental health

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How To Start Prioritising Your Mental health

How much focus and attention do you place on your physical health? Our guess is that you make decisions pretty much every day that impact your physical health. What we eat and how much we move about have a direct impact on the health of our cardiovascular systems, bones, muscles and more. 

Our mental health however, might take a bit of a backseat. Whilst diet and exercise also play a role in looking after our emotional wellbeing, other aspects of our lives will also directly affect our emotions. 

If we live a high stress, busy lifestyle, we have financial or job security worries, children and perhaps elderly relatives to consider, it can all take its toll. Therefore, placing more importance on looking after our mental health is something we could all benefit from. Here’s how…

  • Make time to do the things you enjoy. It might be a simple hour in the garden with a coffee and a good book, a long chat with a friend over video link or telephone or a family day trip to the seaside. Whatever you enjoy doing, try to factor in time each week to do something that brings you joy. Pick up a long lost hobby or learn a new one, book dinner with friends or have a date night – just make sure it’s something you love, rather than a chore. 
  • Getting outside in nature and breathing in fresh air can help to reduce feelings of stress, anxiety and anger and can significantly lift our mood. Try to make a point of walking outside most days, even if it’s a quick 15 minutes snatched at lunchtime or on the way to work (leave the car further from the office or get off public transport a few stops earlier). 
  • Stress is an all too common affliction these days and it can seem like it’s just part of 21st Century living. But it doesn’t have to be – we can take steps to help calm and still our minds. Mindfulness helps us focus on the present and practicing yoga helps us focus on our breath which is very calming. 
  • Sleep is essential for recovery and repair, but also so that we can be productive during the day. Unproductive days can make us feel stressed, under par and agitated, which can build up and lead to anxiety and a low mood, and the vicious cycle of more sleepless nights. Read our tips on perfecting your bedtime routine for helpful hints to get better sleep.
  • If you’re struggling with your thoughts and emotions, speak to someone you trust to listen without judgement. Saying things out loud can be incredibly helpful in figuring out the why behind the way you’re feeling. You’re not alone – if your mental health is affecting the enjoyment of your life, then it’s important to speak to a medical professional such as your GP or call the Samaritans who are there to listen any time of day or night. 

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