If you’ve spent any time online over the last couple of years, you’ve probably heard about a concept called “self-care.” Now, on the surface self-care probably sounds pretty self-explanatory, it’s about taking care of yourself, right?
Well, yes but it’s actually a little more complicated than that. The truth is that self-care is actually an incredibly important part of dealing with things like mental health issues. However, just because it’s an idea that was initially developed specifically for mental health, doesn’t mean that it doesn’t also have positive impacts on your physical health as well.
Here are some simple self-care tips that are great for both your mind and your body.
A Rest Day
When you’re dealing with something like depression or anxiety, then the idea of going out and doing anything can often be too overwhelming to even consider. Because of this, it’s important that you feel able to take a day off from any of your commitments just to recharge until you feel ready to take on whatever life can throw at you.
This can be anything from taking a day to just relax around your house, or hitting the great outdoors and letting mother nature help you through whatever is currently troubling you. Sometimes there’s nothing quite like a long brisk walk to just clear your head and recharge the batteries.
Sometimes you just need to take some time to treat yourself. Even if you’re perfectly happy, there’s nothing wrong with that, but when you’re dealing with mental health issues, then it can be really difficult to feel as though you deserve something like that.
Taking the time to pamper yourself can not only make you feel better but can improve your image of yourself as well. Plus it gives you the chance to take care of your body and your skin in ways that you might not if you’re going through a rough patch.
Everything from a long soak to exfoliating your skin all over can be fantastic for making you feel better. And it’s not just about pampering yourself on the outside. Why not treat yourself to something delicious? A sweet treat or some quality speciality coffee that you might not generally buy can be a wonderful little treat when it comes to pampering yourself.
And if you want to just escape from it all why not book yourself a day at the spa and just relax in surroundings that will really take your mind off everything. We’ve enjoyed several spa breaks across Northern Ireland and they really can provide a great moment of rest.
When you’re suffering from issues with your mental health, then it can be incredibly easy to fall into some pretty bad habits when it comes to your diet. Because of this, you can end up in a cycle of feeling bad, so you eat bad foods which make you feel worse so you keep eating bad food and it just goes round and round.
As much as self-care is about making yourself feel good, it’s also about doing what’s best for you. Making meals and eating right might not always be easy but it can have a huge impact on both your mental and physical well-being.
Of course, if you are dealing with any serious mental or physical health problems, self-care can be great, but it’s not your only solution. Make sure that you speak to the people around you and even a professional if you feel that you need to. There’s nothing wrong with reaching out for help when you really need it. Remember, it’s good to talk and it’s okay to not be okay.
Action Mental Health has some great resources for coping with mental health problems, as does Aware NI. Two great local organisations doing their bit to lend an ear.
Got Something to Add?
We know mental health can be a difficult topic for many, but if you’ve any tips to add to this or anything at all to share, feel free to share them in the comments section below.
Until next time, thanks for reading.
Helen, Nial and Lewis.