5 Ways to maintain mental health and wellness
Now more than ever it is absolutely vital for people to be conscious of their mental health. With the current extra external stressors and pressures it has become increasingly important for each individual to maintain their own sense of mental wellbeing.
What actually is mental wellness, you may ask? Mental wellness ultimately refers to one’s state of mind. At the end of the day it is our mental state that creates our experience. You could be in the most beautiful place on earth and yet still feel anxious or depressed. Mental health brings to the forefront various tools and techniques to help people become aware of their own mental state, various stressors in their lives and how to combat these stressors to maintain a state of mental wellbeing.
If you are keen to learn how to improve, protect and maintain a positive state of mental wellness, read our 5 easy tips and get started today!
Simplify your life
Stress is by far one of the main causes of mental disease. In today’s modern world our lives have become exceptionally high pressure, fast paced and demanding. The pressures of everyday life certainly take their toll and can result in feelings of overwhelm, depression, anxiety, demotivation, anger and more.
The first step towards maintaining your mental health is to cut out all the unnecessary stressors in your life as best you can. This can be anything from certain unhealthy relationships, a job that is highly pressured, perhaps moving your children to a school that is closer to home, letting go of any extra lessons, studies or activities that are not a priority.
Set a time for yourself where you can sit and go through all the commitments and activities that fill your life. Take an honest look at each aspect and try to identify the areas that feel stressful and pressured. If you can, let these go. Simplifying your life will immediately give you a sense of relief, allow you to feel more spacious and take away those intense feelings of stress, rush and pressure.
Peace of Mind – Meditation
There is a large misconception when it comes to meditation. Many people imagine meditation to be a religious or spiritual practice but in truth meditation is simply the practice of calming one’s mind. Meditation is a powerful practice that improves physical, mental and emotional wellbeing. Meditation brings the body into a state of calm which in turn relaxes the nervous system, allowing the body to heal and rebalance itself.
Here is a simple meditation that you can do almost anytime and anywhere. Try to practice a simple meditation daily for at least 5 – 10 minutes or whenever you feel stress building.
Step 1: Wherever you are, become aware of yourself and your body.
Step 2: Bring your awareness to your breath. Take a long deep breath in, and then breathe out.
Step 3: When you breathe out, picture breathing out all stress and frustration. When you breathe in, visualise breathing in peace and vitality.
Step 4: Continue to breathe in deeply – as deeply as you can – and breathe out slowly (this can be done with your eyes open or closed).
Step 5: Continue this deep, focused breathing for at least 2 minutes.
Step 6: Before ending off, think of 3 things you are thankful for and breathe in a sense of gratitude for these things.
Step 7: Breathe out, and let go of all fear and frustration you may be carrying.
Take time to do what you love
There is nothing that invigorates the mind and soul quite like doing what you love. Often we tend to push aside the activities we love for the things we feel we have to do and very quickly life becomes a list of to do’s, rather than a joyful experience of exploration and freedom.
Set aside at least 30 minutes a day to engage in an activity that you love such as art, sport, being with friends, dancing, playing a video game or going for a walk. If you can do more than 30 minutes even better!
Time in nature
Nature is a natural healer. Because nature is in a natural state of balance and harmony, when a person spends time in nature, they immediately become balanced and harmonious within themselves. The natural beauty of nature calms the mind and allows excess thoughts to relax. The fresh oxygen in nature is also incredibly healing for the body as it energises the mind, refuels the cells of the body and naturally re-energises and re-aligns our physical and mental state of being.
If you can, try and go for a walk in nature at least once a week. If you live in the city and this is a bit challenging for you, commit to driving out into nature at least once a month and spend a good few hours simply being at the beach, walking in the forest or going for a picnic. You will immediately feel the benefits and thank yourself later!
We are what we eat. There unfortunately is no way around it. Its becoming common knowledge that eating highly processed foods, and excessive amounts of meat, dairy, sugar and wheat have a significant long term effect on physical wellbeing.
With mental wellbeing being directly linked to our physical wellbeing, it is no wonder that we feel irritable, frustrated, anxious or even sad after eating certain foods. Start to become aware of how you feel after eating certain foods. Our mental health is directly related to our gut health – if you eat food that is not good for the gut, you are going to feel the impact mentally and emotionally.
Improve your mental health through your diet by incorporating foods that are good for your gut health such as sauerkraut, kimchi, all fermented foods, live yogurt, kombucha, almonds, apple cider vinegar and olive oil. Aim to eliminate or reduce heavily processed foods from your diet as much as possible, reduce your meat intake to once a week if you can, reduce your sugar intake and incorporate more natural unprocessed whole foods such as good old fruit and vegetables.
Another great thing to incorporate into your diet is natural supplements. Adding supplements to your diet can help give you that initial boost and support you need. At Avalife we have formulated a phenomenal combination therapy specifically for mental health.
Our holistic mental health combination therapy comprises of Avalife STRESS FREE, CALM, SLEEP & FLORA RESTORE BENEFIT. We’ve put together this combination of peaceful products to help you manage the rough patches. Stress Free and Calm will assist you with your stress and anxiety management as they both contain powerful adaptogens. Sleep will ensure you get a full night’s rest as this is imperative for your wellbeing. Flora Restore will gently restore the microbial balance in your intestines, which in turn helps produce happy hormones and restore your gut/brain axis.
Mental Health Foundation: How to look after your mental health. Accessed 16 September. https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/publications/how-to-mental-health
Image: Unsplash | Denys Nevozhai | https://unsplash.com/photos/z0nVqfrOqWA