Mental health is a complicated aspect of life. Luckily, there are some things you can do each day to maintain a healthy mind.
Maintenance is key when taking care of your mental health. You must keep up with it and not let your mental health care fall by the wayside.
Follow these tips for general mental health improvement and maintenance.
1. Take care of your physical health
Physical health and mental health are more connected than most people think. Step one in caring for your mental health is making sure your physical health is in good shape.
Illness, hormone imbalance, poor diet, irregular sleep routine, and lack of exercise all negatively affect your mental health.
Keep up with yearly wellness checks and consult with your doctor if you aren’t sure what your specific health recommendations are.
2. Make time for self-care activities
Self-care is a critical part of your daily routine. Start and end your day with a short, easily completed self-care activity.
Soon enough, this will fall into your routine and leave your feeling refreshed and relaxed throughout your entire day. There are a wide variety of self-care activities, such as leisure and personal care.
3. Practice gratitude every day
At least once a day, you should take time to give thanks for the good things in your life. This can include personal accomplishments, people, material possessions, and other resources.
You can informally think about this each day. Some people also choose to keep a gratitude journal.
4. Maintain a daily routine
Routine is important for stress reduction and maintaining a level of peacefulness each day.
Establish a morning and evening routine so that you can start and end your day stress-free.
Routines can include hygiene care, meals, meditation, positive affirmations, goal-setting, recaps, etc.
5. Be kind to yourself
Work on your relationship with yourself. Don’t dwell on the negative inner voice that insults you and diminishes your achievements.
Instead, praise yourself and offer positive affirmations throughout your day. Reward yourself for achievements and give yourself compliments.
Tell yourself “I love you” throughout the day, as silly as it may seem at first.
6. Share your thoughts, feelings, and life experiences
Sharing your mental health struggles with others has many benefits. Individually, it gives you strength and helps with self-acceptance.
Looking at the bigger picture, it increases your social supports and serves as an inspiration for others.
Even if you aren’t at the point of being comfortable enough to share your story with others, writing your story in a journal also provides benefits. It lets you put your struggles outside of yourself and onto a more manageable platform.
7. Keep a catalog of healthy coping skills
Anxiety, depression, and other unwanted feelings are going to hit you periodically throughout life regardless of the prevention measures you take.
When these emotions occur, having a go-to list of healthy coping skills is crucial.
These can include leisure activities, grounding techniques, emotional regulation exercises, and any other activity that brings you back to a good emotional level.
8. Lean on your support system
Keep in touch with your loved ones even when your mental health is doing well.
Let them know how your day went and make time every week to get together with them in person.
Don’t hide your struggles when they come up. Your loved ones will be there to support you. Let them know if you need advice or just a listening ear.
9. Plan ahead when possible
We’ve all experienced the stress of trying to get things together at the last minute.
Whenever possible, plan ahead and prepare needed items.
Packing for a trip at least a few days ahead of time
Laying out the next day’s outfit the night before
Reviewing your upcoming schedule each night
10. Seek professional treatment if needed
In some cases, professional mental health treatment is necessary.
This can look different for everybody as there are numerous therapy and medicinal treatment options available.
You may benefit from one or the other, or even a combination of both. This could also be either a short-term or long-term process.
If you don’t feel comfortable pursuing formal therapy, you could also look into self-help groups hosted by mental health organizations as well.