Not quite long ago, we discussed the importance of mental health and why you should take a mental health day at work too.
One day – or a couple of days – out of 365 won’t make any solid difference for you, though.
Since you cannot take off every day, there must be something else you can do.
The little drops, they say, make an ocean. Slowly but steadily, taking it one day at a time, here are some of the things you should start doing.
Sleep Is Key
We don’t need to tell you that the average nine-to-five is not a nine-to-five for most people.
From waking up very early to prepare for work to coming back home late, it takes many professionals more hours to get through the workday. Add that to those who take work home, and you have even more extended work time. All of that, and more factors, can negatively impact sleep.
The average adult should grab eight (8) hours of sleep as much as they can. There are different body types and needs, but that is a good ballpark of sleep to aim at.
We have heard people say that they don’t have enough time to exercise. We think that there won’t be time for anything you do not make out time for.
Proper, regular exercise does a lot to get your body and mind in the right shape. It also improves your self-esteem, boosting your confidence and self-image.
When we talk about exercising, it is not uncommon to have the image of lifting heavy weights in mind. A simple run to your nearest bus stop, or park, or even walking the dog in the evening can exercise enough.
Associating gratitude and achievement with big things alone is not a good habit at all.
Have a journal to track all of the small things that you are grateful for every day.
Did you complete that report in record time? Did you finally get your to-do list cleared? Did someone commend your work habit today? What did your coworker say about your presentation?
Those are the small achievements that we tend to overlook. When you make a habit of writing down at least three things that made you happy about the day, you will find joy in the small things as well as the big moments.
Accept Your Emotions
A lot of ‘coping mechanisms’ have made many people lose touch with their emotions.
There is the bottling up of emotions we do not need to tell you how bad it can get. There is the ‘just getting over it’ phase where we do not accept and validate our emotions, just willing them to go away.
All of that comes back sometimes, and you don’t even know what could trigger it.
A better alternative is to accept and validate all of your emotions.
Feeling angry about the outcome of a project? Accept it and let it go. When you’re feeling frustrated, don’t mask it. Otherwise, you don’t seek help. Instead, reach out to someone that can help you if you cannot deal with such emotions on your own.
Try random acts of Kindness
A Harvard Health study shows that random acts of kindness, as simple as volunteering, can alleviate loneliness and eradicate depression.
If there is a local shelter around, volunteer to help with them. Look for NGOs you are passionate about in your area and donate to them.
When we say to donate, we don’t always mean the money. Some of these NGOs will accept items (such as food, clothing, appliances, and others) from you. Your time is also another thing you can donate to the cause.
Help a stranger when you can. Give alms when you are in the mood for it. All of these add up to boost your self-image and improve your mental health too.