Thursday, 8 October 2015

It's the little things...

Today are doing a campaign called #MindYourSelfie to promote awareness of mental health problems. One in four people will suffer with mental health problems in their lifetime and I just wanted to write a short blog post to help anyone who suffers from low mood or anxiety to remind you of the little things that will really help you get through the day. This is from my own perspective, what helps me.

Self care is so important and while sometimes it feels the hardest thing to do is get out of bed, put on clothes and behave like a 'normal' person sometimes doing just that will make you feel ten times better than staying in bed with your thoughts, and the guilt of letting another day pass by. 


1. Have a hot shower 

It sounds so basic to people who might not have suffered from anxiety, depression or low moods in their life but it's the simple little things that can be hardest to do from day to day. Use a nice shower gel scrub, exfoliate, moisturise, wash your hair and relish the hot water and enjoy the moment. Sometimes it is so difficult to even make yourself shower but it genuinely will make you feel like you have accomplished something that day and once you start taking care of yourself your mood in general will improve. 

2. Write it down 

Don't let things overwhelm you by letting them whirl around in your head, write down what you need to do or what you want to accomplish today. Small goals and tick them off as you go, this way you have control and don't feel overwhelmed by your thoughts. If you feel yourself start to catastrophising or thinking negatively take deep breaths and rationalise with yourself. This can be easier said than done but sometimes it is about mental willpower and not letting your anxiety take over. Don't feel like if you didn't accomplish your goals either that you have failed or let it put you in a bad mood. Little things shouldn't cause you guilt and in the big scheme of things don't matter.


3. Go for a walk outside

Make a promise to yourself to get up, put on your workout clothes and runners so you have no excuses and get outside in the fresh air and greenery and even if it's just ten minutes down the road and back or fifteen minutes up and back your mood will lift. Doing this with a friend is good too, but personally if I have a lot on my mind I know going for a walk will clear my head completely and make me focus on other things. 

4. Don't isolate yourself

Sometimes the hardest thing to do feels like getting up and going to visit your friends or keeping plans or seeing family but making yourself interact can be better than isolating yourself. 

5. Talk to someone

I'm guilty of this myself as I have never really talked to anyone about my general low mood or anxiety. Sometimes I feel people will think, Ah well if you aren't taking medication for it then it doesn't exist but those are my own preconceptions. I prefer to reach out and talk to someone I don't know very well but who I know has suffered with the same issues that I have rather than someone close to me as sometimes you feel like they won't understand, will think you are making a big deal of nothing or who can't relate to how you are feeling. Next time someone asks you how you're feeling, don't just say 'I'm fine.' 


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