5 Daily Habits To Support Your Mental Health
There’s no doubt that mental health affects us all. It's something that impacts every area of our lives, whether that’s emotionally, physically or psychologically. While there’s no go-to rulebook to live by when supporting your mental health, there are small habits you can introduce that will make a huge difference.
Small steps lead to big change, so this World Mental Health Day we’re sharing 5 daily habits to support your mental health.
Getting out in the fresh air helps us to switch off from our screens, allowing us to reconnect and think clearly. Not only does spending time in nature reduce stress and encourage mindfulness, getting outdoors and exposing yourself to natural daylight stimulates the release of serotonin, our ‘happy hormone’. As well as boosting our mood, this daylight also suppresses our ‘sleep hormone’ melatonin, stopping you from feeling lethargic and tired throughout the day.
Practice joyful movement
We know that moving our body makes us feel good; whether that's getting outside for a walk or going to your favourite exercise class. The concept of joyful movement is prioritising exercise you genuinely enjoy, rather than it feeling like a chore. Not only will doing something you love bring you joy, but the movement also releases those feel-good endorphins that are guaranteed to boost your mood. Even if it's just a quick dance around the kitchen, joyful movement is a great way to instantly make you feel more positive.
Connect with friends and family
You know what they say, a problem shared is a problem halved. Research has shown that just one daily connection with friends or family can have a positive effect on our mental health. Not only do we feel heard and understood, these small moments of connection release the ‘love hormone’ oxytocin, a natural stress reliever and mood booster. As well as the biological benefits, this human connection helps us to feel less alone and isolated, which are common causes of poor mental health.
Reduce your screen time
It’s not news that social media can have a negative effect on our mental health. Being in front of our screens and consuming content for too long can cause digital fatigue, and this feeling of being ‘always on’ can take a toll on your mental wellbeing. This - paired with the alerting blue light from your digital devices - contributes to feelings of irritability and anxiousness. By reducing your screen time, you’ll make time for more meaningful offline activities that will boost your wellbeing, rather than spending hours scrolling on social media.
Make time for self-care
Sometimes we can be guilty of putting others before ourselves, but dedicating time for self-care shows that you're prioritising your own needs. It’s a great way to reset and a reminder that you value yourself and your mental health. While self-care can be taking a relaxing bath or making time for your evening routine, it’s essentially anything that helps you unwind after a busy day. Not only does it help you destress, but practicing self-care is also known to increase self-awareness, build resilience and improve our self-esteem.