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The Self-Care Steps You Shouldn’t Skip for Better Mental Health
When you think about your overall wellness, how much thought do you actually give to your mental health? The way you feel can have a major impact on the way you carry yourself and function in the world. So, it only makes sense to make your mental health a major priority with these super-simple self-care tips and practices. Here are ways to get started with self-care for mental health.
Set Yourself Up for Better Sleep
If skipping eight hours of sleep has become a regular habit for you, then you could be unintentionally sabotaging your mental health. Maintaining a healthy sleep cycle, which tends to be about seven to eight hours for most healthy adults, is the single most impactful self-care move you can make. Without that restful sleep, your mind cannot properly heal and refresh itself, which could leave you feeling depressed, anxious, and out of energy.
Choosing the Correct Mattress
A good night’s sleep should always start with the right mattress. Check out this buying guide for tips on how to tell if it’s time for a new bed and how to find a mattress that supports your sleep hygiene.
A comfy mattress and a sound sleep routine will provide a solid foundation for you to achieve your other self-care and wellness goals. In fact, getting more sleep can even help you maintain a healthy weight, which, in turn, can boost your self-esteem and energy levels.
Switching out your bed and boosting your sleep routine could be the most important investment you make in your mental and overall health.
Take Proper Care of Your Physical Health
Self-care is such a simple way to support your mental health. However, true emotional wellness requires a more comprehensive approach. Your mental and physical health are bound to each other in so many different ways. When you are struggling to manage mental health conditions such as depression and anxiety, you are more vulnerable to chronic disease and pain. On the other hand, physical health practices like diet and exercise can also go a long way in lessening the severity of your symptoms.
Exercise is especially potent in regulating emotions and mood, so make sure you leave enough time in your day to get outside and stay active. Just be careful that you’re not overdoing it. The same studies that found benefits from exercise also found negative impacts from exercise obsessions.
If you are looking to maximize your mental health benefits without going overboard, consider signing up for some team sports. Group activity has been found to have the most positive impacts on mental health while encouraging a healthy level of exercise in participants. You can find a local rec team to join or sign up for some fitness classes to give a big boost to your physical and mental health.
Leave Time to Decompress and De-Stress
One of the most beneficial things you can do for your mental health also tends to be the hardest: finding time to relax. When you are dealing with busy schedules and constant social pressure, relaxation can feel like an unnecessary luxury. In reality, however, your brain and body need downtime in order to refresh and maintain essential processes. Finding this time is the key to being the best version of yourself, so make relaxation a major priority.
Since you are already taking steps to enhance your sleep, work on taking small breaks throughout the day and even taking longer periods of time off. You may need to re-work your schedule or you may even have to learn to say “no” more effectively.
Just remember that you need time to yourself just like you need sleep and exercise, so don’t feel guilty about protecting your leisure time. Avoid making hasty decisions so that you have some time to think about whether committing your time to an activity or task is worth it.
The Importance of Self-Care for Mental Health
Mental health is such a prevalent issue in our modern world, and it’s time to take more control of yours. Basic but often forgotten self-care practices can make such a difference in your emotional and mental health. So, think about adding some of these healthy habits to your wellness routine to add more joy to your life.