How to take care of your mental health during Quarantine??
After being confined for months at home and with no mobility to the outside world, words like anxiety, stress, depression, bored, exhausted , anger, bad mood have all become a part of daily life journals and affected our mental health in some way at some point of time.
Mental Health refers to an individual’s emotional, psychological and social well being.
It creates an impact on how we think, feel and act on a daily basis. It also influences how we look at ourselves, our lives and others involved in our lives. Mental health also affects how we handle stress and make decisions in our life. Hence, it is not only important to take care of our physical but mental health as well.
We need to start loving ourselves more and promote happy thoughts within ourselves.
If you have never given a thought before about your mental health, then it’s not too late, making simple lifestyle changes can easily keep you on track to good health.
Below are some ways you can start taking care of your mental health
1. Do something you enjoy
Engage in something that you enjoy doing, it could be reading a book, cooking a dessert, watching your favorite series on Netflix, watching a movie, painting a landscape or portrait. It could be just anything, but make sure to do something each day so that your mind gets relaxed and content. This sounds easy but many people wouldn’t even remember when was the last time they did something enjoyable, if asked.
2. Add exercise to your daily routine
Exercise has its proven benefits to our physical and mental health. Exercise can only benefit you when you follow a routine. Starting your day with exercise keeps you active and boosts energy into your body. It also releases chemicals like endorphins, dopamine and serotonin which are responsible for triggering a positive feeling in the body. They help in regulating your mood.
If you are a beginner, you don’t need to do an intense workout, start with a morning walk and some basic yoga poses. For some this will be more than enough for the day and for others this could be a good starting point before moving to a advance workout.
3. Have a healthy and colorful palette of food everyday.
A healthy diet is the one which is rich in nutrition,vitamins, minerals and provides enough calories to the body. You don’t need to follow a specific diet everyday going on counting each calorie. (Unless recommended by a professional for medical purposes) A healthy diet means you are balancing your food plate well and taking care of all food groups.
Try to include all seasonal fruits and vegetables to your plate everyday. Be creative with food. Add all the natural color foods to your plate.
A healthy diet reduces risk of chronic diseases, heart attacks and cancers. It helps maintain your sugar levels and keeps you from getting obese.Healthy diet is associated with good mood, good physique, more energy, better body weight and overall good mental health. Eliminate junk food from your diet completely as it will one day show it’s adverse effects on your mental and physical health, and it will be too late to change. Reduce salty and sugary foods from your diet as they can impact your health too. Unhealthy diet is also a major cause of depression amongst people.
4. Have a good sleep routine
We all are guilty of staying up late in the nights during Lockdown. It could be because you were watching a movie, completing your leftover work, reading etc. It could also be because you have been overthinking about something, feeling stressed or maybe the fear of something happening is eating you up.
But did you know you are carving a path for the negative effects of sleep deprivation??
Sleep deprivation happens when you consistently do not get adequate sleep.
Sleep deprivation can lead to a weak immune system which makes you vulnerable to serious health problems like heart attack, heart failure, diabetes etc.
Sleep deprivation affects your ability to think and make sound judgements
If you have been making wrong decisions for a while and ended up frustrated, sleep deprivation could have been the cause because it clouds your judgement.
Sleep deprivation also aggravates depression and worsens your mental health. It is known to produce stress hormone called cortisol in excess which leads to muscle weakness, high blood sugar etc.
Sleep deprivation is also known to increase weight gain and cause obesity. That is because it disrupts the key hormones that regulate appetite.
Therefore, ensure to sleep atleast 7 hours at night for a healthy mind and heart.
5. Take up a new Hobby.
Taking up a new hobby is a good way to distract your mind from your usual routine and acts as a stress buster. It soothes your mind and channels it towards being more productive.
Learning is a essential part of human survival. Humans have evolved over time because they never gave up learning. If you want to keep your mind healthy and active all the time, develop your interests in new unexplored areas. This will keep your mind curiosity active and alert.
Here are a few tips for you to get started,
If you have never tried to learn a new language, now is the time you can. Learning a new language is always interesting and it opens new doors of communication with people out of your comfort zone. Also it will boost your confidence and take you to a new level.
You must have seen the trend of baking throughout this lockdown, every other person is baking their own food. Research has proved that baking releases endorphins, serotonin, oxytocin and dopamine which are all happy hormones. You can try baking a simple banana bread, or a simple cake with few ingredients. There are abundant videos on YouTube and blogs that are meant for beginners only.
6. Be Social and seek help.
If you have always bottled up your emotions, it is time to make some changes for the sake of your mental health. You might say it’s easy said than done. You are right!
You will have to make a effort for this one, you will have to gather all the courage you can and try put your trust in some other human of your kind. You have to open up your heart to them just like you open a book and show them everything, how you feel, how your emotions are eating you up, how lonely your heart is sometimes, how you get thoughts about wishing you were dead and get over with it.
It’s time you think of yourself, it’s time to let go of things and begin to see the light across the tunnel and run towards it. Surely you will not regret what you did for yourself in the coming years. You will be proud you made that decision. And when you share it all, you would have relieved your load, the burden on your head and in your heart you have been carrying for so long and start feeling better like never before. THIS WORKS!!
As I always say don’t lose yourself for people who don’t value you and make you feel low about yourself. It is human nature to never be pleased, so don’t lose yourself please.
If you don’t find anybody you can trust and share your load, don’t think twice to seek a professional. Don’t ever feel ashamed or weak for doing so. You are doing it so you can be stronger and happier.
Why waste life just because someone couldn’t understand you? Or you lost something that was temporary.
There is much more to life that meets the eye. Change your perspective and look at the world again. You will find peace and tranquility.