- Embrace change. For my whole life I have always buried my head in the sand or run as fast as I can away from my problems, because facing them is too much to handle. Therefore I learnt to embrace change, because sometimes the only way to run away was to physically move cities (I know it is extreme, I am still learning to not run and face my problems). If you embrace the changing world around you, it makes you much more versatile to unexpected things happening, and forces you to put coping mechanisms to deal with the changes. If I have had a sudden change in my life, then I will sit down and work out the benefits and the challenges this change has, as well as what I believe to be the best way forward from that point, I then change my routine, my habits and my attitude to fit in with that change, then I re-evaluate after a while to see if I need to change anything. This works well in a work situation because you can obtain feedback from peers and your boss; bosses like action plans, so by setting yourself deadlines to work towards, it helps with how your boss assesses you too.
- People do not always understand. Be ready for this, it is common knowledge that the best way to deal with mental health is to talk about it. However sometimes the people listening do not understand, and you are likely to receive resistance from them, so be prepared for this, do not get upset if they don’t understand because it may just be that they have never come across these issues before. The most important thing to do is make sure you explain what you do to feel better, and why you do the things you do. That way even if they don’t understand, they will be able to see what you are doing, and know that it is something you just need to do.
- Whatever you need to do, do it. Mental Health is an exhausting battle, so don’t make it harder for yourself. So if you feel like you need a duvet day, take one, If you need a friend to curl up on the sofa with you, and talk about the universe, call them and ask them to come over. If you don’t feel like going outside, then don’t.
- Know the difference between mental health and what you just don’t want to do. There is a big difference between what mental health stops you from doing, and things that you simply just don’t like doing. For example, I don’t really like heights, but I recognise that isn’t because of mental health, that’s just a phobia I have.
- Eat the right things. The healthiest way to look after your mind is to look after your body too. So put the right things in it, a healthy diet is a step closer to a healthy mind.
- Exercise often. As previously, a healthy body leads to a healthy mind. But exercise also releases endorphin and serotonin into your blood stream which naturally boosts your mood and reduces the effects of depression, anxiety and other mood lowering mental health issues.
- Accept who you are. Some of us make people laugh, others are good at maths and some are talented cooks, everyone is different, so focus on what you’re good at and accept what you are not.
- Drink Sensibly. The answer is never at the bottom of a bottle, or a pint, or your 10th shot. Alcohol is a depressant, so keep an eye on how much you consume, you don’t want to over do it and trigger something nasty! (I have had experience of this, it’s terrifying and very easy to completely loose control)
- Meditate, Yoga, Thai-chi… UNWIND. One of the methods that really helps me when I’m feeling panicked or unwell is to sit in a quiet space (or any space at all really) put my headphones on and listen to a guided meditation, relaxing music or sounds of beaches, forests and other relaxing sounds. This helps take my mind off of whatever I’m feeling anxious about and puts me in a better place. When at home, I try to stretch out my body through Thai-chi or yoga (I normally use YouTube videos, but sessions in the gym work too!!) and just relax my muscles. I then take a hot bath with some candles and some muscle relaxant bubble bath, with a face mask.
- Pampering. When I’m feeling anxious or stressed, I like to take a pamper day, where I concentrate on my physical and mental well being.
Mental Illness is nothing to be ashamed of, if you need any advice or support then feel free to comment below, or if you want to talk to me privately then feel free to contact me directly!
Please like this post and share your comments and additional advice below, lets pull together and support each other!
- Living with Mental Illness: Rethink
- Time to Change: Talking about Mental Health
- Meditation: Head Space
- AmyPags Recovery My friend Amy is in the final stages of recovery, she’s a real fighter and such an inspiration to me and to everyone else around her. I’m so proud of her. She has created this instagram page to document the final stage and to talk about the road.
- Tumblr: The Best Damn Mental Health Blog: This is not my own blog, but I have found it very inspiring, informative and purposeful