February 15 2013
Mental health has become more acceptable to talk about over the last few years – prior we didn’t like to admit or discuss that anything could be comprised within our rational self! With more awareness through initatives like Bell Canada’s annual ‘Let’s Talk’ Day, the importance of mental health is receiving more awareness. And to really confirm we are wiling to be aware many public figures stepped forward and acknowledged that they are struggling with mental health issues too.
Being healthy mentally is often a balancing act and does take some focus and effort. But with personal awareness of our thought patterns we can help ourselves. Today’s busy lifestyles, growing to-do lists, responsibilities of work & family, and the economy tougher than ever; how do we keep calm and peace with our busy brains!? Regular tea moments will help and an ‘attitude of gratitude’ goes a long to put our own, busy and sometimes troubling thoughts into perspective. It is when we lose perspective, and our thoughts become narrow and few, that the stress increases.
One cannot manage too many affairs: like pumpkins in the water, one pops up while you try to hold down the other. Chinese Proverb
When we find ourselves starting to feel overwhelmed or stressed here are a few suggestions that may help.
Check in with your basics
- When did you last eat; we can’t function well mentally, if we haven’t had enough nutrients
- Exercise helps us recharge and let go of tied up energy – get up and dance, stretch wherever you are, do yoga, go for a walk or a swim, play some sports… even briefly
- Make sure you are getting enough sleep, we have more perspective when we are well rested
- Take a break and focus on something completely different (Meditate, have a cup of tea, read a book, watch a comedy on TV, etc.)
Practice: Do, Delay, Delegate or Dump – Make a list and decide what needs to
be done now, what can be done later (today, tomorrow, next week), what can/should be done by someone else and what doesn’t really need to be done at all. Now Do the Do List! J (see links below for a more detailed explanation) Making this list will often help prevent your to-do items from going around and around in your head
Remember that not all mental health issues can be solved on our own – remember to phone a friend! and there are some times when we will need outside help or guidance – partner, friend, support group, doctor….
How do you sooth your mental stress?
What works best for you?
Which do you find is the hardest to do?
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