No matter who you are, it is important to have the tools to take care of your mental and physical well-being. Mental health and physical health go together, and when you take care of your mental health, it is advantageous for your well-being and life all around. So, what can you do to take care of and support your mental well-being on a regular basis? Here are some tips and advice.
Self-compassion is a crucial skill to use, and despite what some think, it’ll never hold you back from progressing. In fact, it tends to do quite the opposite. Using self-compassion allows you to work through problems while supporting yourself as you would a cherished loved one. One way to practice self-compassion is to use positive self-talk and affirmations such as “I am resourceful.” If you do something that you aren’t necessarily proud of, self-compassion also applies. For example, if you struggle with self-sabotage, you might say to yourself something like: “It’s understandable that I reacted that way. This is something I can learn from. Why do I think that happened? What can I do to navigate it differently next time?”
A lack of social relationships is a known health detriment, where having positive social relationships is known to have many benefits. Research shows that social relationships and connections are correlated with lower levels of stress and anxiety, a longer life, and higher self-esteem. Social connections are also known to help people relieve stress. To improve your well-being, spend time with others. Bonus: when you set aside quality time for friends, family, and romantic partners, they’ll appreciate it just as much as you will! If you’re in need of new social connections, it can be helpful to join a class or make an effort to put yourself in another setting where you can meet new people.
Sleep offers an incredible number of physical and mental health advantages. When you sleep enough, you are:
- More alert and more likely to perform better at work, school, and in other endeavors.
- Less likely to get into a car accident.
- Supporting the functioning of your immune system.
- Lowering your risk of potential consequences that a lack of sleep has on your physical health, which range from short-term consequences like GI distress and headaches to long-term effects such as an increased risk of heart disease.
- More likely to avoid other potential negative impacts of a lack of sleep, which include but aren’t limited to irritability, trouble in interpersonal relationships, changes in mood, and so on.
Acknowledge Your Feelings
If you find that, at any point, you are feeling down, overwhelmed, or stressed out, it’s important to acknowledge your feelings. Rather than avoiding emotions, take the time to explore them. For example, if you’re feeling down, you might say to yourself, “I acknowledge that I am feeling sad. What is contributing to this? What can I do to take care of myself, empower myself, and show myself love right now?” Consider reaching out to your support system, journaling, or engaging in any other activity that is personally helpful for you. Your feelings are valid, and they’re there for a reason. Emotions can be seen as a way that our inner needs communicate with us; welcoming them in and caring for them the way you would care for loved one’s emotions is a crucial piece of taking care of yourself.
Know And Honor Your Needs
It can be hard to prioritize yourself, but the fact is that you very much so deserve to know and honor your physical, emotional, psychological, and social needs. This can look like:
- Taking time for self-care. Self-care is different for everyone. It might be something like making sure that you clean up your workspace so that you’ll have a clear, productive environment to work in the next day, keeping up with a skincare routine because you know that it makes you feel good, or something else.
- Fitting in “you” time. This could look like attending an exercise class of choice, spending time outside, spending time on a hobby, or something else. It’s important to nurture your soul and do things that are enjoyable. Remember, happiness itself is good for your health, and the little things matter!
- Asking for help. Asking for help it will never make you weak. In fact, it makes you strong. Whether you’re asking for help with something like child care, asking for a friend to listen, or seeing a mental health professional, it is essential to honor your needs and reach out for assistance when you need it in ways that are accessible for you. So many of us have internalized the idea that we shouldn’t have needs, and that simply isn’t the case.
Ask For Help
Therapy is an excellent way to take care of your well-being. When you’re struggling with mental health, need someone to talk to, or simply aren’t feeling your best, seeing a counselor or therapist can be incredibly beneficial, and in some cases, life-changing. If you opt to use a platform like MyTherapist, you can be sure that any provider you’ll see is a licensed mental health professional. An added bonus is that it’s often more affordable than traditional in-person counseling or therapy is in the absence of insurance. When you sign up for MyTherapist, you’ll take a questionnaire that’ll help you find a provider who meets your needs. You can switch providers or cancel your membership at any time, and you’ll never have to worry about spending time and money commuting to make it to your appointment. Whether you see someone online or face to face, don’t hesitate to reach out. You’re worth it!