There are so many things that people celebrate your life. You are envied by the number of friends you have. The number of trips you’ve taken this year, the stunning success that you’ve achieved in your career, a healthy relationship with a partner or spouse. By the world’s standards, you can seem incredibly successful – an object of admiration and envy.
To the world outside, you are the embodiment of a prosperous and healthy lifestyle.
And yet you struggle with feeling low, tired, and sad. In a crowd of people, you can feel incredibly alone. Despite all your success, you can feel like you’ve failed.
You give and give and give to the world outside while draining your internal resources. There’s a whole side of you that’s crying out for a little care, compassion, and a healthy serving of (metaphorical) chicken soup. This is your emotional or mental health, and it demands just as much importance as your physical health.
So, we’re here to suggest some small changes that won’t disrupt the pattern of your life but will merely enhance it. After all, everyone deserves a healthy mind and soul.
- Posture: We spend the majority of our days hunched over our laptops, our heads bent down towards the screens of our phones. If we’re feeling low, we instinctively curl up a bit – defending ourselves from the lash of an emotional blow. But did you know? Proper posture can have incredible mental health benefits. Sitting up straight or walking tall can amplify a good mood, reduce fatigue, and can also reduce the effects of mild depression.
- Smartphone usage: Just like our bodies, our minds and souls require constant nourishment in order to grow. With smartphones, that stream of information can often seem relentless and can very often provoke a feeling of inadequacy or anxiety. What you need is a healthy diet for mental health – a balance of receiving that information and actively stepping away from it. Because, as important as it is to be updated and on top of your game, it’s equally important to take note of how that information is making you feel. Make sure you take a digital detox from your smartphone once in a while.
- Sleep: The first casualty of a busy life is sleep. You stay out late with friends or burn the midnight oil struggling to finish that presentation. Your emotional state, healthy life, and fitness are closely associated with sleep. It’s no surprise that a lack of sleep can make you groggy and sluggish the next day. If it becomes a habit, a lack of sleep can cause a variety of mental health problems such as a rise in anxiety or depression.
- Personal Time: Between jobs, families, responsibilities, and duties, we can feel like we’re drowning. And on top of that, the pressure to juggle all of these different aspects can, over time, take a great toll on our mental health. It is in these times that you need to carve out time for some healthy life choices. The most important of these is personal space – a chunk of time where you indulge in your favorite activities – cooking, dancing, painting, or even napping. It’s almost like a little gift you give yourself – a few hours that are entirely yours.
- Gratitude: This is a tough one and requires a fair bit of practice. It can be extremely difficult to feel gratitude after a long day when nothing has gone right. Luckily, the gratitude you feel doesn’t need to large or all-encompassing – it can simply be the recognition of something small. A smile, a hug, a word of praise. The simple act of acknowledging the good parts of the day can lift your spirits. All you have to do is be open to those moments.