Ten Things You Can Do for Your Mental Health

mental health retreats

With a brand new season before us it is a great time to review the state of our mental health. After a most challenging spring and summer, due to the stressors associated with the pandemic, the fall offers a fresh chance to restore our mental health.

You’d think it would be easy to assess our own mental health status, but it isn’t always obvious to ourselves that we have a problem. This is because many times we might suppress awareness of a mood disorder, basically be a bit in denial about it, until it manifests itself in a health condition. That is how closely entwined our mind and body are, that when one aspect of our being is out of whack, the other will suffer, too.

Examples of this might be somatic symptoms, like chronic headaches or gastrointestinal distress caused by excessive worry. In some cases, even heart arrhythmias can be caused by not heart disease but anxiety. Depression can also be a precursor to certain medical conditions, such as cancer, thyroid problems, or heart disease. In essence, minding our mental health will benefit both our mental and physical wellness overall.

10 Tips for Improving Mental Health

So, what are some ways we can tune up our mental health? Here are 10 actionable steps we can incorporate into our routines that will help us maintain optimum mental health wellness retreats and live our best lives:

1. Spend time outdoors. Most of us have spent far too much time indoors this year, due to social distancing policies. As these policies are relaxed we should all increase the time we spend in the fresh air and sunshine because it can uplift our mood significantly. As well, the sunshine provides us with the vitamin D we need to keep our immune system strong while also protecting us from depression.

2. Try a mental health retreat. Mental wellness centers are like a one-stop shop for an all around mental health reboot. Whether you are a guy seeking a men’s mental health retreat or a gal looking for a woman’s mental health retreat, there are many to choose from. These retreats offer a wellness package that includes holistic therapies, psychotherapy, group therapy, and experiential activities.

3. Get enough sleep. People underestimate the importance of quality sleep to their mental functioning and overall wellness. Adults need a minimum of 7 hours of quality sleep per night for optimal mental health benefits. Try to stick to a regular sleep schedule, while also avoiding things, like being on your laptop or smartphone, eating heavy meals, or consuming alcohol, that will disrupt sleep.

She needs her beauty rest

4. Improve your diet. Who can deny feeling better when they stick to a healthy diet versus one laden with processed or fast foods? Science confirms the impact of nutrition on our mental health. Increase foods with high levels of omega-3 fatty acids like salmon, walnuts, Brussels sprouts, and avocado while limiting sugary or salty snacks.

5. Learn to relax. Learn some tried and true methods for reducing stress and practice them regularly. These might include taking yoga classes, learning how to meditate, learning deep breathing techniques, practicing mindfulness, treating yourself to a massage, drawing or painting, or even keeping a gratitude journal.

6. Increase physical activity. People know they should be exercising more but often get caught up in the assumption that it means going to a gym and working out, which doesn’t appeal to everyone. Getting regular physical activity can be anything you enjoy doing that gets your heart pumping, such as swimming, bike riding, hiking, dancing, walking, or cross-fit training.

7. Deepen your relationships. People who are socially isolated are more prone to developing depression. To avoid this, make a point to reach out to the people who matter in your life on a regular basis. Even during social distancing policies it is
easy to find ways to get together outdoors where you can take a walk on the beach or a walk in the park. Spending time with people you care about is extremely beneficial to mental health.

8. Help the less fortunate. Anyone who has ever participated in a charity event or volunteer activities knows how good it feels to help others. Shifting our attention from ourselves towards offering support or kindness for others is very edifying. Seek out some volunteer possibilities in your own community so you can make a real difference in someone’s life.

9. Rediscover your interests. Too often we go through months or even years taking care of everyone else while neglecting the activities or hobbies that we are passionate about. Find new balance in your life by making time to rekindle those passions. Maybe you love music, creating artwork, writing, building things, or want to take a class. Make the effort to tend to your own desires and needs and experience better mental health.

10. Seek help if needed. This tip might be the hardest to do, but it is ultimately the most important one. If you believe that you are in a mental health crisis and need professional support, do not hesitate to seek it out. Ignoring a serious mental health condition will only allow the symptoms to worsen over time and lead to more serious consequences. So, if you feel your mental health is deteriorating despite all your efforts, reach out to a mental health provider today.

With so many options available to improve mental wellness, the ball is in your court. Value yourself enough to say ‘yes’ to you and take the proactive steps to boost your mood. If you are a woman feeling that anxiety or depression has taken a toll, seek out a women’s mental health retreat near me and treat yourself to some much needed healing time. You have earned it, and even more, you deserve it.