In support of mental health awareness week, 13-19th May, Medical Negligence Trainee Costs Draftswoman, Sarah McDermott shares her top five suggestions to help improve your mental health.
It is important to take action to help your mental health so it doesn’t become worse.
So what can we do? Let’s consider five key steps recommended by health experts in order to improve our mental health:
Connect with the people around you: your family, friends, colleagues and neighbours. Spend time developing these relationships.
Evidence shows that good relationships with family and friends are important for our mental well-being.
There are many ways to build stronger and closer relationships:
- If possible, take time each day to be with your family.
This could include a fixed ‘’family time’’ each day.
- Arrange a day out with friends you haven’t seen in a while.
- Switch off the TV and play a game with your children, or just talk.
- Make an effort to call people, sometimes it is easy to get into a habit of texting, messaging or emailing people.
- Speak to someone new today.
- Have lunch with a colleague.
- Visit friends or family who need support or company.
- Make the most of technology – video chat apps like FaceTime or Skype are a great way of staying in touch with family or friends, particularly if you live far apart.
You do not have to go to the gym, take a walk, go cycling or play a game of football. Find an activity that you enjoy and make it a part of your life.
Exercise is also one of the most effective ways to improve your mental health.
Regular exercise can have a profoundly positive impact on depression, anxiety, ADHD, and more. It also relieves stress, improves memory, helps you sleep better, and boosts your overall mood.
Learning new skills can give you a sense of achievement and a new confidence. So why not sign up for that cooking course, start learning to play a musical instrument, or figure out how to fix your bike?
Give to others
Even the smallest act of kindness can count. Whether it’s a smile, a thank you, or a kind word. Larger acts, such as volunteering at your local community centre, can improve your mental well-being and help you build new social networks.
Be more aware of the present moment, including your thoughts and feelings, your body and the world around you. Some people call this awareness “mindfulness”. It can positively change the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges.
Keeping these five things in mind will help you to improve your mental health and daily life!