World Mental Health Awareness Day

Hey fellow bookworms,

How are you doing? Are you taking time for yourself?

Today is world mental health day and I think it is really important to highlight the importance of taking time to care for yourself and your mental health not just on special awareness days, but also on an every day basis. It can be tough; we all lead such busy, complex lives. But it is so important to take care of yourself, physically and mentally.

Self care is so important. When you take time to replenish your spirit, it allows you to serve others from the overflow. You cannot serve from an empty vessel.

Eleanor brown

Perhaps you feel lost on how to conduct self-care. Fear not, I have listed some self-care methods below:

Journaling

image: https://www.livingasunshinelife.com/journaling-my-way-to-a-powerful-and-emotional-fresh-start/

This can be as simple as writing about how you are feeling in those moments, what happened throughout the day and how that made you feel… Or you could even do creative journaling. I have a “quote” book with my favorite quotes, doodles and poetry in it. I have even written some random thoughts in it.

You could even do some combination of those things; make it yours! When you are done with it, it will be like you, in a scrapbook form.

Whether you do one or the other, or even some combination of both, it is a great way to externalize what you are feeling so that you can directly address your feelings.

Reading

Young woman sitting on the floor next to a pile of books and reading a book

Credit: Africa Studio/Shutterstock.com

I am sure this is pretty obvious to you guys, but reading is a great way to “escape” and give your mind a break from reality so that your subconscious can work things out.

I once had a professor tell me that she allows herself “stolen reading time” where she reads a book even if she doesn’t necessarily have time to read. She said it helps with her stress by allowing her to refocus and see whatever challenge she is facing in a new way.

And, since it is “stolen” reading time, it feels even better. 🙂 Hehe.

The book you read can be whatever you want; it can be a old favorite or even a self-care book. This is about you and what you feel like!

Take a bath, light some candles…

image from: https://www.freebunni.com/how-to-make-bubble-bath-bliss-in-6-steps/

While this may seem “extra” … this is self-care we are talking about here! You can’t be too extra. Pamper yourself! This will help you rewind, calm your mind, decrease your anxiety and relax.

Take a walk/Work out/Yoga

Image thanks to my twin sister, Lauren!

I personally love going on walks because you get to be out in nature, smelling the fresh air, hearing the wind whistle and the trees brush against each other.

Walking a great way to not only take care of your mental health, but also your physical health. Being surrounded by nature, it is much easier to gain a new perspective and feel at peace.

Working out is also a great way to take care of both your mental and physical health by reducing stress, anxiety and improving your mood.

Similarly, I find that yoga is a great self-care tool. It is physically challenging (depending on the level of difficulty) and it helps you center and ground yourself.

Dance

Me in 2017, skating for the first time after a year due to attending university!

I was a competitive figure skater for 14 years so I also personally find skating or even dancing a great way to convey and make sense of my emotions through movement in a way that is artistic yet cathartic.

And you do not need to “be good” at it, that is the great part of dancing and creative expression! You are the artist, you set the rules.

If you are having trouble keeping up with self-care, I find that scheduling in self-care activities keeps me accountable!

Overall, these are all great ways to care for yourself. It is this process of self-care that we de-stress, improve our mood, and look at our life stresses and challenges with a fresh perspective.

An empty lantern provides no light. Self-care is the fuel that allows your light to shine brightly

Unknown

I know this post was a wee bit different than what I normally blog about, but mental health and self-care are both really important topics to be aware of and tackle on a daily basis.

Remember to check in with not only yourself, but your friends and family! Remind them to take care of themselves, too.

What are some of your self-care techniques? Let me know in the comments below!

Maya 🌹

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