It is about that time when we start reflecting on the past year and begin to look forward to what next year has to bring. Evaluating the ups and downs in order to center our attention on working towards some more healthy practices and new habits.
It is about that time when we start reflecting on the past year and begin to look forward to what next year has to bring. Evaluating the ups and downs in order to center our attention on working towards some more healthy practices and new habits. Whether you already focus on mental health or want to incorporate a more mindful lifestyle to improve yourself in 2023, small incremental changes can make a big impact.
Mental health is central to every part of our lives: how productive we are at work, how we feel when we are alone and how we interact with loved ones. By partaking in certain activities targeted at mental health, you are bound to see results including boosting your mood, building resilience and adding to your overall enjoyment of life.
Just like physical health, mental health benefits the most when you focus on it regularly. By making healthy practices, targeting mental health, part of your daily routine, not only will you develop new and good habits, they will become easier. You can start with small incremental changes where you don’t try to change everything overnight or take on too much all at once.
Here are some ideas of healthy practices you can explore:
- Learning how to meditate can help your mental health in a variety of ways. It is a great way to give your mind a time out and instill a sense of calm. Try to carve out one or two sessions a day, even if they are only five minutes long. There are plenty of mindfulness apps to download that are helpful for getting started and learning the techniques that work for you.
- Be it scrolling through your social media feeds several times a day or only communicating through text, it is important to disconnect and have time away from the screen. Technology may rule the world but it doesn’t have to rule our lives or our happiness. Start by setting your phone aside for an hour each day. Take that time to do something else such as read a book or meditate.
- Exercise is not just for your body. Regular exercise can reduce stress and symptoms of depression while boosting self-esteem and happiness. Even a small amount of physical activity can make a big difference. The best strategy is to start out easy, because if you overexert yourself you will be less likely to stick with it. Start small by taking the stairs at work or going for a walk outside at lunch.
- Adequate sleep is vital for good health, brain function, and emotional well-being. Most of us need 7 to 8 hours of sleep every night. Try going to bed and waking up at the same time every day and make sure to wind down at least thirty minutes before bedtime without electronics.
- Therapeutic journaling is a process in which an individual writes down their thoughts, emotions and experiences. This differs from keeping a diary where daily events are documented. Journaling dives deeper and helps make sense of internal experiences. Writing about thoughts and feelings also enables an individual to express them in a way that can help them work through difficulties and move forward.
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