Thanks to the incredible work of various charities and organisations in recent years, most of us are aware of just how important good mental health is.
However knowing that good mental health is important doesn’t always translate to having that healthy state of mind we read about.
So, if you’re like many of us and know that it’s important to have good mental health, but don’t always know how to actively work on it, then this article’s for you! We’re going to run you through three easy ways that can help improve your mental health!
1. Deep Breathing
This may sound really obvious, but deep breathing is one of the simplest and most effect ways you can hone in on your mental health and clear your mind!
It’s probably no secret that stress is connected to some serious mental health struggles, such as anxiety and depression, but what may be a surprise is that these struggles can also have terrible physical effects, such as suppressing your immune system, which can cause you to become sick more frequently.
While stress is unfortunately a fact of life, that is not always able to be avoided, establishing a healthy way to respond to it doesn’t have to overwhelming, and really is your best defence.
One of the simplest responses to high-stress moments that can have a real effect, is to find a quiet place and practicing some deep breathing. This deep breathing sends more oxygen to the brain and can stimulate your parasympathetic nervous system, which in simple terms means, that this breathing exercise can trigger the mind to promote a state of serenity. Meaning that you’re left feeling a little more calm, and subsequently, less stressed.
We promise we’re not going to say ‘going for a jog is going to instantly fix everything’, but what we are going to explain is that there are a STACK of mental health benefits to getting that health regime reinvigorated! Like it or hate it exercise is a proven stress barrier for our bodies.
Firstly, exercise has been proven to boost your mood, with peer-reviewed evidence even suggesting that physical exercise is an effective intervention in mental health care.
Your usual cardio suspects, including running, swimming, cycling, walking and dancing have all been found to reduce anxiety and depression. Not only this, these exercises have also been linked to better sleep, relief from stress, an increased day-to-day mood, increased energy and stamina and more!
So if working on your mental health back, maybe it’s time to dust off the runners and get a few more steps in – #SweatAwayTheStress!
Listen up pals, if your day isn’t going to plan or anxiety levels are at an all time high, becoming more of a green thumb may be just what you need! Tending to the garden isn’t just benefiting your garden plant friends, it’s just as much positive for you as it is for them!
Without even realizing, donning the garden gloves and heading outside exposes you to some fresh air, a stack of vitamin D and even works in a little aerobic exercise, which all work together to positively impact your mental health, in more ways than one!
Proven to reduce stress, a recent study out of the United States found that gardening reduced cortisol levels in participants’ blood samples. Another recent hospital study found that more than 75% of patients said they felt more relaxed and calm if they had spent time in a garden.
Not only is gardening a relaxation and stress reduction game-changer, it’s also been proven to prolong your attention span, and can even go as far as to reduce ADHA symptoms.
So hey, if you’re feeling like stress is getting the better of you, or can’t seem to concentrate, then maybe it’s time to head into your local garden shop, grab some garden essentials and issue a little outdoor TLC to your new little plant pals!
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