Your mental health is just as important as your physical health, possibly even more important as it is not visible. It can be easily overlooked by others or neglected by yourself.
But it is so important to look after it. Just as you eat well and exercise to keep your body healthy, you need to actively take care of your mental health and not just think about it when problems arise.
Here are some practical things you can do to keep your mental health in shape:
This could be keeping a journal or just writing random thoughts down at the end of each day. Both are a good way to clear your mind and help you get a restful nights sleep.
You will be surprised at what comes out of the tip of your pen once you start writing. You may find that problems or worries you didn't even know were bothering you suddenly become clear and easier to tackle.
Be realistic with yourself, with your goals and with your abilities. We can put too much pressure on ourselves to be perfect when in reality, nobody is perfect and nobody can do it all.
Once you come to terms with this and set achievable goals you will be so much more content in yourself.
Keep in touch with loved ones
Keeping in touch with friends and family can often be pushed to the wayside of work and partners. This can have a negative impact on your mental health without you even noticing, especially if you are a quieter or more introverted person.
Do you ever come home from a days work only to realise you've hardly had a conversation with anyone all day? Making a conscious effort to ring your parents or making a monthly date with your friends or sibling will help prevent you from feeling isolated.
Take yourself out on a date
Go for a coffee on your own, join an art class or spend an hour rooting through the library. Whatever activity you enjoy try to do it alone every week or two.
It is important to take an hour out of real life and forget about responsibilities and stress and just enjoy yourself.
Ditch social media
This might not be easy to do but try to read a book every day or chat with friends and put your phone out of reach. Not giving in to the temptation to scroll through Instagram can do wonders for your mental health.
Seeing social media influencers and inadvertently comparing yourself to them can affect your self-esteem without you even noticing.
Following positive and strong female influencers will also have a positive impact.
Studies have shown that laughing, even when you aren't happy releases feel-good hormones. Try watching a comedy or some funny YouTube videos and have a good belly laugh.
Ask for help
If you do feel like you are struggling with your mental health talk to someone you trust, these things never get better on their own.