Post by Bridget Webber
Reviewed by Emily Garber, APRN
Mindfulness is a terrific mental health tool because it increases self-awareness. So much of the time, people engage with life on autopilot. They follow behavior patterns unconsciously that create stress.
For example, you might argue with your partner about the same old problem you usually clash over. But when you're mindful, you create space for change. Because you live in the moment, you can note anxiety rise and take steps to improve the way you communicate.
Mindfulness can also help you recognize negative self-talk. It can pull you back into the present if you worry about the future or chastise yourself over a past event. When you live in the moment, calmness increases as you focus on your breath, actions, or the environment.
To practice mindfulness, tune into your body and your surroundings. Note physical sensations, body movements, sounds, sights, and smells. These behaviors will keep you present and increase your mental health.
Carry out self-care
People often overlook the significance of self-care. Time out to engage with hobbies, laugh with friends, or treat your body to relaxing practices can boost your well-being.
Include joyful events in your daily activities, however small. For example, sitting in the garden and listening to birdsong, enjoying your preferred beverage as you admire the sunset, and flipping through your favorite magazine can reduce anxiety and help you relax.
Likewise, having a daily hand and foot massage, taking a scented bubble bath, and stretching can help to improve your mental health because you'll release tension.
Since your body affects your mind and vice versa, exercise is a valuable tool to increase mental fitness. Exercising will also help you when you want to let off steam if you're tense or angry. Since it creates feel-good chemicals, it's a mood-enhancer too.
Mindful exercise practices like tai chi, qigong, yoga, and meditation are great for mental health. They can help you tap into calmness and learn to regulate your emotions. Regular practice will also teach you to control your breath for optimal relaxation.
Many people have poor mental health because of traumatic thoughts. If self-talk is negative, your mood will plummet. But you can enhance your mental wellness by speaking to yourself as you would to a best friend.
If you conversed with a best pal, you wouldn't be unkind. Be just as compassionate with self-talk. Self-soothe, motivate, and praise with your inner voice, and your mental health will rise.
Start each day with a positive intention
The second you wake in the morning, your mind's a blank slate. With no impressions to contend with, like worries about what the day might hold, you are free to increase positivity.
Begin each day with a positive intention. For instance, you could resolve to speak kindly to yourself and others or look for life lessons in challenges.
Carry your positive mindset into the day and see how your mental health improves. The more you focus on positivity, the simpler it will be to build an optimistic, stress-free outlook.
Make taking care of your mental health an everyday practice, and managing challenges will be easier. In addition, your sunny disposition will help you create healthy relationships and boost your well-being.