Mental Health Boosters

Mental Health is very important. The focus on mental health should be as strong as physical health. I like to list some habits that encourage a healthier mindset. A healthier mind leads to more happiness, peace with yourself, others, and life. It cultivates self-growth and confidence.

We as individuals should always strive to improve our mental state for our well-being. For our ability to live life fully. Here are some habits/routines that can be beneficial to our mental well-being. Reminders and awareness of these habits can help us work towards improvement and mindful living.

  • Set goals-Writing a list of goals and checking them off is a great way to boost your confidence. The feeling of accomplishment and achievement is a great feeling. If you can do one thing, than you are much more confident to do another. Make sure the goals are specific and manageable. I always feel better when I accomplish a goal, like finishing a blog post. It improves my mood, and my perception of the day improves.
  • Get movement-Exercise releases endorphins, which helps elevate your mood. You may not be a fan of exercise, but at least 20 minutes of walking can be helpful. Get up, and get moving in anyway you possibly can, even if it is walking around for a bit. Our bodies need movement, and so does our minds.
  • Commute with nature-Spending just 5 minutes in nature can help improve your mood. Something about being outdoors in nature just lifts my spirits. It calms me, and rejuvenates me. It shows you the beauty of the world, and it gives you a sense of appreciation. It gives you the space to think, and be free. It can bring you back to reality, and what truly matters.
  • Get sleep-Our mind needs rest. Getting enough sleep gives you clarity, allows you to be more productive. It gives you the energy to go on with your day, and get what you need to get done. Less sleep creates exhaustion, unproductiveness and anxiety. It can lead to one feeling low and down. Sleep helps heal our body and our minds, so it is important to get as much as we can. Most see sleep as a luxury, but it isn’t, it is a necessity. We all know what our mental state can be with lack of sleep. We can’t think, or function like we normally do with a sleepy mind and body.
  • Create a mindful routine-You can do this in the morning, at night, and during the day. This is the time to step away from distractions and just be in the moment. I think it is great to do this before bed, and after you wake up. It can help relax you before bed, and it can help recharge you before you head out for the day. This is the time to step away from digital devices, and live in the moment. Distractions can cultivate feelings of anxiety, frustration, anger, sadness etc,. Stepping away from that for a bit can help alleviate those feelings, and allow us to be in a more calmer and happier place.
  • Try something new- We all have routines, but would it be more fun to do it in a different way? This can help spice up your day, and bring a bit of excitement to your day. It would make your day a little less mundane, and a bit more enjoyable.
  • Less reactive mentality-Try to go with the flow of life. Remind yourself that life doesn’t always go to plan, or life isn’t always smooth. We should make some breathing room for the unexpected, so when the unexpected happens. We are able to cope better. Traffic jams, accidents, flat tires, lost keys happen etc, in these moments, take deep breaths, and accept what is. This can allow for a calmer state of mind.
  • Connect with others-I always feel uplifted after meeting up with a good friend, or family member. We are social beings, so connecting with another individual is important for our well-being. Remember that quality, over quantity is important. Being able to communicate our true thoughts with another can be a wonderful experience.
  • Express yourself-Similar to the one above. There are other formats to express your thoughts and feelings as well. Journaling, writing(lyrics, stories, poems), drawing, composing, can all be forms to communicate your thoughts that can be therapeutic for oneself. Letting your thoughts out brings relief.
  • Drink water-Our brains are made of 75% water. Loss of hydration can have serious effects on your mood, concentration and cognitive functioning. Studies have shown that decreased water intake cultivates higher levels of anxiety, depression, anger, tension and fatigue.
  • Reduce sugar/processed food intake-Eating added sugars and processed foods is linked to higher rates of depression and anxiety. It is also known to deplete the B vitamins we need to sustain good moods. Try to add a bit more nutrient dense foods to your diet. Balance is key.
  • Gratitude-Counting your blessings is a great way to see life in a more positive light, and lift your mood. Focusing your energy on the things you do have, and the things you do enjoy is a great way to boost your mood, and put you in a happier place.

As you can see there are plenty of ways to help improve your mental health. I just wanted to bring a bit of awareness to some things that can help improve your overall well-being. Our mental health should be a priority. Mental instability is prevalent, and there should be more focus on improving our wellness. There should be lessons and classes on this for everyone. Awareness is key. Below are some visuals of mood boosters. I thought it would be a nice addition.

6 Instant Mood Boosters | Self care bullet journal, Self care activities,  Self improvement tips
Immunity Boosters: Nutrition and Health Facts - News, Yoga, Health, Fitness  and Mental Health www.Yogfit.in

A Different Type Of Holidays

As the covid cases continue to rise. It seems like the holidays will be a bit lonelier this year. My family has made the decision to cancel are Thanksgiving celebration. This is my favorite time of year to get with the family, eat some delicious foods. My favorites are my Aunt’s lasagna. I also enjoy some coquito, but our safety comes first.

I was a bit disappointed that I won’t be celebrating Thanksgiving with the family. I most likely won’t be for Christmas, or going anywhere for New Years as well, since I expect things will still be bad. I am sure many of you are in the same boat.

Although, it is a bit disappointing and disheartening. We got to do our best to keep our spirits up. I am now starting to get in the Christmas spirit. I usually wait, until after Thanksgiving, but since that day will just be a regular day for me. I am ready for the Christmas spirit. How I just love the ornaments, lights, music, and feel of Christmas, also the cookies and mint chocolates! You may not be able to spend time with loved ones, but there are still plenty of things to cheer about.

We must remember that safety is most important, and that you can always call, text, or video call your loved ones. Also, you don’t have to worry about the hassle of cooking a big meal, or traveling, so that can be a plus. The holidays will be different, but it doesn’t mean it has to be bad. Making the best out of it, and looking at the positives is important.

Life is always changing. Things don’t always stay the same. We got to learn to take on every challenge that comes our way, and do what it takes to make it work for us. How can you benefit from it? What are the positives? Learn, accept and keep moving. Do whatever you can to bring as much peace and happiness in your life. Things may seem bad, but it is in how you perceive it. Please stay safe out there everyone.

Depression & Anxiety With Mindfulness

Depression and Anxiety are prevalent in this stressful, and difficult world we live in. Millions of people deal with these disorders daily. Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy, and Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Therapy have been implemented to help with these disorders. Mindfulness in therapy is fairly new, but studies have shown they have helped reduce the symptoms of depression and anxiety. There still needs to be more research, since it is still new to the world of therapy.

I will say from my experience, mindfulness has been a helpful tool for my symptoms. We are all different, so I won’t say it works for everyone, but I do think my five points of mindfulness can help guide an individual to help manage the symptoms of these disorders. I have discussed my five points of mindfulness before. I like to discuss how I think these points can be helpful. Depression and anxiety can’t be cured, but the symptoms can be alleviated, so they don’t control your life.

Mindfulness Five Points:

Focus:

This is about being present minded. I have consistently mentioned if you stay stuck in the past, it can lead to sadness, guilt, shame, which can lead to depression. And if you are looking forward, it can lead to apprehension, tension, stress, which can lead to anxiety. Being in the moment can pull you away from these negative thoughts and feelings. It reduces the tension and sadness by just being present. If one stays stuck in the past and keeps looking forward. The negative thoughts, feelings, and emotions will grow and intensify. This is why focusing on the moment is important for our peace of mind.

Awareness:

Awareness is very important in the world of mindfulness. Awareness of your anxiety, and depression symptoms can go a long way. Acknowledging how you are feeling opens up the door to the other 3 steps. It is a relief to acknowledge the feelings and emotions that one has. “I feel anxious.”” I feel sad.” “I feel lonely.” “I feel shame.” “I feel tense.”I feel fear.” Acknowledge how you are feeling. Now remember to put emphasis on “I feel,” instead of “I am.” Saying “I am,” you are defining yourself as these emotions. “I feel” is just defining how you feel at the moment. There is a bit of separation between you and the emotion. I think that is important to distinguish. It also helps not to be critical of oneself when having these feelings.

Understanding:

Here you get to dig in, and figure out why you are feeling the way you do. Why am I fearful? Why do I feel lonely? Why am I tense? Why am I sad? It is important to ask these questions. It is important to ask the right type of questions. “Why me” questions, or “why is life unfair” questions don’t really answer anything, and it creates more negative thoughts, emotions, and feelings. It is better to ask questions you can find answers to. Questions that can help improve your self and your situation. You need questions you can learn from. Learning why you feel the way you do, and why you have these thoughts can create some relief. You now start to realize the reasoning behind these thoughts and feelings.

Perspective:

Here you start to realize that most of your thoughts are negative. When it comes to depression and anxiety, thoughts are mostly negative. There isn’t much realistic, or positive thoughts flowing around. This is where you challenge your negative thoughts. Depression and anxiety come from a place of negativity. Here you flip that switch, and try to see things from a more realistic, or even positive point of view. Maybe this is teaching me a lesson? Maybe this is showing how strong I am? Maybe this is helping me to become a better person? Am I really as lonely as I think? Is my life really over? Is there nothing I can really do? It is all about perspective. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy really puts this step into use with their treatment.

Acceptance:

We try to push away the symptoms, but acceptance of the symptoms and the disorder is important for one to get through the difficult time. Normalizing it allows the individual to focus on figuring out how to cope and manage the disorder, instead of trying to fight it, and create a world of negative self-talk, and negative thoughts in general. Learning that it is okay, and human to have these feelings, and thoughts can help aid the healing process. Remind yourself, it is okay to feel sad, lonely, lazy, tense, depressed, anxious etc,. can go a long way to a smoother healing process.

The important thing is to confront the disorder, and all the keys will fall into place. Pushing yourself to be happy, and perfect can cause more distress. One should allow these feeling to just be. Now mastering these steps takes time. It won’t happen overnight, but every little step to recovery helps.