When you feel good, your energy levels are high, and there’s a liveliness to your step. You feel confident, strong, and decisions are easy to make. You have motivation and goals seem achievable.
However, when you don’t feel good, energy levels are low, and you might find yourself misstepping. Confidence levels are down, and so is your motivation. Where did the excitement for life go?
That’s where mental health comes into play. Your mental health is directly linked to your physical health. If you don’t feel good mentally, how can you expect to feel good physically? Sometimes, all we need is to take a step back and look at what we could be doing to better improve our mental, overall well-being.
A few simple changes in your daily lifestyle can go a long way. Try these 7 daily rituals that can boost your mental health.
7 Daily Rituals That Can Boost Your Mental Health
1. Incorporate Physical Activity Every Day
Exercising for 30 minutes is the goal per day. However, if you can’t get in your daily exercise, be sure to incorporate some kind of physical activity.
Physical activity gets your blood moving and releases pent up energy. In return, you relieve negative tension which is excellent for your mental health and overall well-being.
Furthermore, physical activity stimulates your brain which releases feel-good endorphins.
If you can’t get in your 30-minute workout, simply do a 10-minute yoga session, run in place, or do some jumping jacks.
Other ways to get in some fast, physical activity is to take the stairs instead of the elevator, walk to work, school, or the store, or take your dog for a quick walk around the block.
2. Learn Breathing Techniques
There is power in breathing. When you feel stress creeping up on you, stop and take 5 big breaths. Hold in each breath as long as you can, then slowly exhale. This breathing technique will help to regulate your body and stress levels.
In fact, deep breathing is very calming and is known to reduce anxiety levels.
Repeat the deep breathing pattern until you feel calm.
3. Monitor Your Thinking
One good way to improve your mental health is to monitor your thinking. When negative or upsetting thoughts creep into your mind, don’t dwell on them.
In fact, learn to recognize them. Negative thinking can change our moods for the worst, and quickly. Thus, it’s best to nip those bad thoughts in the bud and don’t allow them to take over.
When a negative thought enters your mind, don’t entertain it. Instead, be counteractive and find the thought’s positive side. For example, if you start thinking about how things are not going so good, change that thought to “I’m trying the best that I can, I’m going to keep on working at it, and things always turn around for the better.”
4. Implement Exercise Three Times A Week
Stop making excuses and find a fun way to get in your exercise at least three times per week. You will feel the results almost instantly!
Nothing is better to relieve anxiety and to boost your mental health than exercising.
This doesn’t mean that you have to go to the gym or even go to yoga classes. Find a way that exercise fits into your life. Find something that you enjoy to do.
Some suggestions could be:
- Taking Your Dog Out For a Long Walk ─ Several times per week. Look at a map and find new parks with hiking trails. Here are 12 Reasons To Get Out and Go Hiking!
- Go Bike Riding ─ Most cities and areas with bike trails rent bikes out nowadays.
- Go Swimming ─ Even in the wintertime, there are many indoor pools open to the public for a small fee.
- Do Yoga at Home ─ Here are some great online, free workout yoga sessions, complete with instructors: Free Online Yoga Workouts Part One and Part Two.
- Go Kayaking or Canoeing ─ Try something new. Many state parks rent out kayaks and canoes.
Here are more ideas for incorporating fun exercise into your weekly schedule and if you have trouble getting motivated, read Small Steps To Getting Back To Exercising.
Both of these blogs are full of tips to help you get out, and get moving again!
5. Set Daily Goals
Setting daily goals will help to keep you on track. When we feel like we are not accomplishing what we think we should be, it causes stress.
Set realistic goals for each day. Write them down. Begin with the most important tasks first.
Leave time between goals for short breaks or for things to not go as planned.
Again, be realistic. If you get finished with your daily list, and you still have time, then keep going.
Accomplishing and marking off tasks makes us feel good. Such as we accomplished what we set out to do and what we should be doing. This is vital to our mental health and balancing our overall well-being.
6. Make Simple Diet Changes
Your diet can directly affect how you feel. Simple changes can truly make a difference in your energy levels. Feeling better is a direct link to boosting your mental health.
Here are simple diet changes you can make to improve your overall health:
- Stop drinking soda ─ Drink flavored water instead. There are many varieties available today. Some are even carbonized to give you that soda feel!
- Switch your white bread and grains to whole wheat bread and grains ─ I hear the excuse all the time that people don’t like wheat bread. Well, there are lots of varieties to choose from, so try something that is not so grainy at first. Try a honey wheat or butter wheat bread.
- Eat more fruits and vegetables ─ I know that you hear this all the time, but they are so good for you! Furthermore, they will fill you up and keep you from wanting those sugary snacks! Take a baggie of carrots to work with you instead of a bag of chips. Try to snack on fruits and veggies at least twice a day.
- Visit your local farmers market once a week ─ This will help with the previous step, plus it’s something fun to do! You never know what you will find at a farmer’s market, and the fruits and veggies taste so much better when they are fresh!
- Stop over-eating ─ Over-eating just makes you tired and bloated! I know that sometimes it’s hard to do, especially when you got a great meal in front of you! However, just save some for later!
- Try to eliminate as much sugar as possible ─ Use a natural sugar substitute if you need to like Stevia. Click on the link to learn about the nutritional benefits of Stevia.
7. Learn How to Take Care of Your Mental Health
Taking care of your mental health is just as important than taking care of your physical health!
- Keep a journal ─ Writing in a journal is good because you can really let go and record your feelings. Even if you just start by writing about your day, it can lead to opening up and letting loose feelings that you might otherwise hold in.
- Take time each day to meditate ─ relax or reflect. Try these relaxation techniques!
- Do something every day that makes you happy ─ This can be anything! Just be sure to make time every day to do it!
- Always try and see the positive in everything ─ See the cup half full as opposed to half empty! It makes everything better!
- Get out in nature more ─ Studies show that spending time in nature is a natural mental health boost! Read Having a connection with nature truly can heal your mind! to find out why!
In conclusion, we here at Zen know the importance of taking care your yourself ─ both physically and mentally!
Robin, and the Zen team.
Note: This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any health condition. Therefore, ask your doctor about any health concerns that you might have and seek proper medical treatment.
Cover Photo Source– Pixabay.com