Hello my friends! 😀 How important is your mental health to you? Today, I would love for us to chat about something that’s been on my heart & mind for a while now- our mental health…
I felt the urge to write this post, after my friend confided in me a while back, that he’d been contemplating suicide… This was during a very dark season in his life.
He happens to be one of the most positively energetic people you’ll ever meet! But no one could have guessed the demons he was fighting inside.
That’s the thing about our mental health, isn’t it? Because it doesn’t always manifest physically, we may not immediately see the signs… Furthermore, in the past, topics of suicide and mental health have been stigmatized.
Tuesday, 10th September 2019, was World Suicide Prevention Day. And something beautiful happened on that day… People came out to share their stories of attempted suicide, and how they’ve overcome.
These were stories of hope, speaking encouragement to others who might be in similar situations… It was quite moving. 🙂
There is a close link between mental health and suicide. And while mental health issues aren’t the only cause, I reckon it’s a fine place for us to start…
Did you know?? According to the World Health Organization, one person commits suicide every 40 seconds, in the world. And on average, about 800,000 people die by suicide in a year…
We are all affected by suicide, one way or another. Counted in that number could be your brother or mother, your colleague or friend…
So this really got me thinking; how can we be part of the solution?
7 Ways to Nurture Your Mental Health
Our mental health relates to our overall psychological well-being; how we feel about ourselves and others, plus our ability to cope with everyday difficulties.
This sense of well-being can be thrown off by loss, dealing with a chronic illness, grief, alcoholism, heartbreak, stress… and more.
I believe that before you and I can help someone else out, we must first attend to our mental health…
I don’t know where you’re at today, but hopefully these tips will help you get started on actively taking care of your mental health…
Yes, l know it sounds quite simplistic… But laughter truly is the best medicine!
Laughter produces endorphins that promote a sense of well-being, reduces stress & boosts our energy levels.
>>Just try it! When you’re feeling low, watch something that cracks you up or surround yourself with people who make you happy. Laughter costs nothing and you can do it anytime, anywhere! 😀
Take Interest In Your Mental Health!
We tend to pay more attention to our physical health, than our mental health…
Consider, how you feel about yourself and others… And as you become more aware of your thought patterns, it becomes easier to know when you are out of sync.
>>Journaling is a good way to dig deep and track your thoughts…
Sometimes when I read my journal entries from years back, I can tell the times when I wasn’t in a great place mentally… It enables me to see my progress, thus offering strength to face the present.
And if you find you aren’t coping well, it is okay to seek professional help. It’s a great show of strength and self-care. 🙂
Helpline>> Befrienders Kenya offers support, for people dealing with depression or feeling suicidal. Call +254 722178177 or +254 736542304
Eat Well and Exercise
Eating a good, balanced diet rich in vegetables and nutrients helps in promoting a sense of well-being. Regular exercise generally puts us in a good mood, while also helping the brain concentrate & think clearly.
>>Always eat a good breakfast to power up for the day!
>>Eat small portions spaced throughout the day, as opposed to a big lunch and dinner.
>>Stay hydrated with at least 6-8 glasses of water, and reduce your caffeine intake.
>>Get your vitamins and fibre fix from fruits and vegetables.
>>Incorporate exercise like walking or swimming into your daily routine.
>>Don’t miss your proteins intake. Proteins contain amino-acids which produce the chemicals needed to regulate the thoughts and feelings in our brains.
Build a Strong Support System
Knowing that you have people in your corner, enables you to face the world with confidence. Find someone you trust to confide in and share your life’s issues with.
You’ll then realize that you are not alone, and the people in your life do care about you… 🙂
Similarly, be a friend too. If you notice someone in your circle is struggling, reach out, and let them know that they can talk to you.
Take Time Out…
I dare say that Social Media has become one of the worst enemies to good mental health.
We spend hours scrolling through other’s seemingly ‘perfect lives.’ And more often than not, this makes us feel dissatisfied with our own lives… Can you relate?
>>Take time out on a regular basis, when you switch off from Social Media and plug into your immediate world. Spend time bonding with family, friends and even in your own sweet company. 🙂
Foster an Attitude of Gratitude
Have you ever felt like nothing was working out in your favor? In such moments it can be difficult to see the good…
Gratitude opens us up to positive emotions and allows us to appreciate good experiences…
>>Challenge yourself to write at least 5 things you are grateful for daily. It may not feel great at first, but as you nurture this habit, your attitude towards life will begin to change… 🙂
Get New Hobbies…
Life can quickly become a cycle of work and home. And before you know it, you’ve become a stranger to yourself.
Our human spirit is wired towards progress and growth… Engaging in a hobby or creative passion boosts our mental health.
Perhaps it’s time to learn something new, or try something you’ve always wanted to do like skateboarding or traveling? Make time for yourself, and do the things that make your soul come alive. 🙂
Tip: Check out this post on World Kindness Day for practical tips on how to spread more kindness around. 🙂
Thank you for reading! I hope you found this post useful…
I would love to hear your thoughts, questions and experiences with mental health. Do leave a comment down below. 🙂
P.S. Share this post with all your friends and family, & lets work together to nurture good mental health. 🙂
<<Stay. Inspired. Always>>