A new year is is a good time for fresh start when it comes to improving your mental health. Battling depression and anxiety will never fully go away, however there are very simple habits that you could take up that will improve your every day life – slowly but surely.
Run a nice bath
In the fast paced world of showering, some ignore how relaxing a bath can be. The best time to take a bath can be right before bed. Start the bath when you’re getting a little bit tired and add in some essential oils (lavender, rose, frankincense, chamomile all work.) as well as epsom salts or any type of bath salt. For added colour or scent, add in a bath bomb.
De-clutter your room
Similar to what multitasking does to your brain, physical clutter overloads your senses, making you feel stressed, and impairs your ability to think creatively. If you’ve been thinking about reducing clutter, your closet is a great place to start. Donating unused clothing to discount resale shops provides for your local community as well as giving you a sense of purpose (it’s also eco-friendly!). Paring down your wardrobe creates a minimalist closet space, and it will help clear your mind.
Take a social media sabbatical
Whether it’s only for one day or for one month, taking some time away from social media will give you more time to focus on yourself. Many see social media as a way to “show off” their life to their friends when it may not always be that way behind the scenes. After some time, it may become a mirage and you are leading two separate lives. If you feel you are at that point, it may be best to step away and reevaluate.
Wake up 30 minutes earlier
Stress is a big part of depression and anxiety. When you give yourself more time in the morning to relax, wake up and make your tea or coffee and read the newspaper, it’ll give you a better feeling going to school or work.
Go an entire day without complaining
Negative feelings cross our minds much more than we would like. Whether it’s our appearance, our situation(s) at work or school, or otherwise – your struggle with your mental health will increase. Repetitive positive thought and positive activity can rewire your brain and strengthen brain areas that stimulate positive feelings.
Do one things you’ve been putting off
If different tasks have been taking a toll on your mind, make a list and complete them one by one! Take off the simple ones first, then work your way up. If you may not have any time to complete the harder tasks, look at your calendar or schedule and figure out when it can be done. If you have a clearer mind, it’ll only benefit your mental health in the long run.
Practice being present
Taking things one day at a time is key to maintaining a clear and healthy mind. If your focus is too much on what’s to come or what occurred in the past, it fills your mind with too many thoughts at once. It can be a difficult task to achieve, but with some practice, only focusing on that present day will keep your mind at ease.