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Let's talk about mental health

Read Time: 4 minutes

This past year has been tough for everyone. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted our lives in so many ways, and its prolonged periods of lockdown and constant uncertainty have wreaked havoc on our mental wellbeing.  

In fact, according to the Stress Management Society, since the pandemic began, 65% of British adults have felt more stressed than usual, with a further 53% feeling much more anxious in day-to-day life.   

So, let’s talk about mental health. How often do you check in on yours? Prioritising your own wellbeing is now more important than ever, yet so many of us neglect this part of ourselves in favour of hectic schedulesbusy jobs and the need to get everything done. 

But this week is Mental Health Awareness Week – a time where we can reflect on how we’re doing and put some measures in place that will protect our mental health and preserve our wellbeing.

 

Go outside

Nature is the theme for this year’s awareness week, which, after a year of mostly being indoors, is no surprise. Being outside in the fresh air does wonders for your wellbeing and also has a positive impact on your concentration levels. So, if you have a job that sees you inside for most of your day, try your hardest to get out during your lunch break, even if it’s just a walk around the block.  

 

Reach out

The old saying goes: a problem shared is a problem halved. So, if you’re feeling stressed, anxious or just a little out of sorts, pick up the phone and offload to a loved one. Chances are, they’ll appreciate thcompany – and you’ll create a lot more headspace for yourself by doing so 

 

Practise self-care

Are you guilty of neglecting your own needs? Don’t worry, a lot of people are. When you lead a busy lifestyle, sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day, which makes it easy to demote self-care activities down the priority list. However, taking some time to yourself is so important for a healthy wellbeing, even if it’s just 15-minute meditation session, or sitting down to read a chapter of your favourite new book. 

 

Limit social media usage 

You know how it goes: you just opened up your phone to check the time, but pop on to check your social media notifications while you’re there – and just like that, 45 minutes have gone by. It’s so easy to fall down a social media rabbit hole, but various studies have proved that this type of behaviour negatively impacts your mental health and wellbeing. So, limit your usage and try to break the habit of reaching for phone when you have a few minutes spare.  

 

Don’t be too hard on yourself. 

The past twelve months have been rough. And although we are beginning to see some light at the end of this long covid tunnel, we are still living in a pandemic. So, keep that in mind the next time you have a bad day, miss a workout, or if you eat a few more biscuits than usual. Instead of setting lofty goals each month, why not shift your approach by setting smaller goals for each week. That way, keeping on track will be easier to manage, and you’ll feel much better about yourself along the way, too!   

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