BY Tim Hoopmann
World Mental Health Day — 10 October — was a day for global mental health education, awareness, and advocacy. It challenges perceptions about mental illness and encourages everyone to look at mental health in a more positive light.
1 in 5 Australians are affected by mental illness annually, yet many don’t seek help because of stigma. Self-care is any activity that we do deliberately in order to take care of our mental, emotional, and physical health. Good self-care is key to improved mood and reduces stress.
It is key to a good relationship with self and others.
Where do you begin?
- Stick to the basics. Focus on activities that work for you. Get these right and you are off to a great start.
- It needs to be something you actively plan and not something that just happens. Make a plan, write it down, block time in your calendar. Stay focused.
- Keep an open mind, believe that the activities you choose will help you take care of your mental health. Focus on the outcomes.
Everyone manages stress in different ways and it’s important to be aware of this. One solution does not fit everyone. It is important to seek out what works for you.
A Good nights sleep
- 8 hrs work best for me, and I wake refreshed.
- Winding down prior to sleep by disconnecting from my tech devises has a positive impact on my sleep
Exercise in the am
- This energises me for the day and helps make me more resilient to what is coming my way
- It sets up my day for success
Use positive words
- I always get a much better response when I start with a positive
- Positive words create positive energy for me. Then I find those around me then react more constructively
Set a start & End time each Day
- Staying late doesn’t give me time to relax and unwind
- Setting boundaries around my work time keeps me focused
- This really helps me to offload and talk about issues
- I find having a mentor or coach is a great benefit and allows me to share with them and this lessens the burden on family or friends
Spend time with your loved ones
- The most important part of my everyday
- Spending time together makes life worthwhile
It might seem hard to focus on mental health and wellbeing at this time but prioritising this is more important than ever. Every day it is important to take time to reflect on yourself. Think about how you are feeling and if there are things you could do differently to take care of your wellbeing.
Ask for help early and remember you are not alone.