Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. It can be easy to forget to prioritize self-care activities that promote positivity, stress-reduction and ultimately lead to happiness. We tend to think about our happiness just as an emotion but it’s so much more. Your mental health is fully reliant on your mental health. These are a few mental health goals I have set for myself and stick to as much as possible. While life might get in the way from time to time, you are responsible for creating your own health and seeing the best in a bad situation. The mindset you have is the most important thing you’ll ever own.
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Mental health goals that are sure to change your life.
Like I said, life might get in the way from time to time. But in the end, if you make time and try to add a few of these goals into your life, it will make a worlds difference. I’m a mom of two with a job and social life I need to maintain and believe me it’s not easy. But I know that I can’t give from and empty cup and neither can you. Here are a few things I do to keep my mental health in check and live a healthier, happier life.
1. Practice gratitude.
Practicing gratitude is a great way to change your mindset and focus on the good in life rather than the bad. One way to do this is by taking time each day to reflect on what you are thankful for. This can be done in a journal, through prayer or meditation, or simply by mentally noting a few things that brought you joy or comfort that day. I recently started writing things I am grateful for in a Gratitude Journal and it’s been such a game-changer. I love the fact that I’m able to look back at the things I used to be grateful for and see how significantly my life has changed.
It’s important to not only acknowledge the big things but also the small things that often go unnoticed. By focusing on the good in your life, you train your mind to see the positives in any situation and develop a deeper appreciation for the simple pleasures in life.
2. Stay active.
Get your body moving in any way that fits into your life. Whether it be a daily workout, going for a walk or even dancing, make time for yourself and get that body moving. Not only is staying active good for your health but it should be one of your biggest mental health goals. When you are active, your body releases endorphins which is your bodies happy hormone. No matter how you felt before getting active, you always feel better afterwards.
Set realistic goals for yourself and find someone you can share your journey with, this helps keep you motivated and wanting to move. Always be mindful of your body and make sure to stretch before and after each workout. I love doing a session with Grow With Jo on YouTube and I go for regular walks with my kids. Find something you love and stick to it, this is your journey and it should be something you love doing!
3. Make time for self-care.
Usually when someone hears the word self-care they think skincare. That’s what I thought for a very long time until I realized what it really was. You need to make time to take care of yourself, whether it be reading a book, doing yoga, or simply soaking in a warm bath, make time for you because you can’t give from an empty cup. We tend to get busy in life and forget to do things for ourselves and that can lead to feeling stressed and overwhelmed and before you know it you’re in a full blown burnout and have no idea why.
Although it might seem insignificant, taking a few minutes to meditate, shower, exercise, read a book or just enjoy your cup of coffee alone before they day starts, makes a huge difference to your mental health. My few minutes a day is doing a quick workout and before I go to bed I focus on my skincare. It’s something I enjoy doing and it makes me feel good and that’s what matters. Find something that you WANT to do, no matter what anyone else says. It’s your mental health, not theirs.
4. Try using positive affirmations.
Challenging negative self-talk and replacing it with positive affirmations requires practice and awareness. I often have to give myself a pat on the hand because I’m saying something negative. It’s taken a lot of practice but eventually it gets easier. When you are tying to figure out what positive affirmations you need in your life, first try and establish areas in your life you tend to get negative about. Let’s say for example you are out shopping and see a shirt you like but think, “I’m not even going to try it on because it will probably look horrible”.
Change the mindset to “That’s beautiful, but my body deserves something different that’s just as beautiful” and add a affirmation into your daily routine in the lines of “I am grateful for the unique and wonderful body that I have, and I choose to love and appreciate it just as it is.” Repeat these positive affirmations consistently and intentionally to rewire your thought patterns and create a more positive mindset. Here are 5 hacks to get rid of negative thoughts.
5. Make sleep a priority.
To make sure you get enough sleep, it’s important to have a solid nightly routine. Start with a consistent bedtime that allows for at least seven hours of sleep. Now I know, it’s not always possible. Some night I get 5 hours of sleep, I’m a mom it’s just the way it is. BUT, as long as you get a good nights sleep on average, your body will thank you.
Tips for a nightly routine to help you sleep better:
- Calm your body before bed: Do things like reading a book, taking a warm bath, or practicing relaxation exercises.
- Limit screen time: The blue light emitted by screens can interfere with the production of melatonin, a sleep-inducing hormone.
- Mindful eating: Avoid heavy meals, caffeine, and nicotine close to bedtime. Opt for a light snack if hungry, and try to finish eating at least 2-3 hours before bedtime.
- Create a comfortable sleep environment: Keep your bedroom cool, dark, and quiet. Invest in a comfortable mattress and pillows.
- Limit naps: If you need to nap, keep it short (20-30 minutes) and avoid napping too close to bedtime.
- Exercise regularly: Engage in regular physical activity, but try to finish exercising at least a few hours before bedtime.
- Manage stress: Practice stress-reducing techniques, such as journaling, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation.
- Limit fluid intake before bed: Reduce the likelihood of waking up for bathroom trips by limiting fluids in the hours leading up to bedtime.
6. Challenge your mind.
Challenging your mind is key to keeping it sharp and resilient. One of the best ways to do this is by trying new hobbies, learning a new skill, or taking a class. Engaging in activities that are outside your comfort zone can be intimidating at first, but it can ultimately help you grow and expand your horizons.
Trying new hobbies can offer a wealth of benefits, from reducing stress to increasing creativity. Whether it’s knitting, painting, or dancing, finding a new hobby can challenge your mind and provide an opportunity for personal growth. Similarly, learning a new skill, such as a new language or a musical instrument, can be a stimulating and rewarding experience. Taking a class in an area that you are interested in, such as cooking or photography, can be a great way to challenge yourself while also meeting new people.
When you challenge your mind, you not only improve your cognitive abilities but also create a sense of curiosity and a craving for lifelong learning. That’s how I initially got into Aerial Silks and Pole Fitness and I’ve been hooked ever since!
7. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
If you are experiencing symptoms of anxiety or depression, seeking professional help should be a top priority. Start by speaking with your primary care physician, who can refer you to a mental health specialist. You may also want to consult with a trusted family member or friend who has experience with mental health challenges. Most importantly, do not hesitate to reach out for help; the sooner you get treatment, the more effective it can be in managing your symptoms.
There are many mental health professionals available in most communities, including therapists, psychiatrists, and psychologists. Some people may find it helpful to seek out online mental health resources, such as online counseling services, support groups, or self-help materials. Whatever your needs, there is help available, and with the right treatment, you can feel better and improve your overall well-being.
Mindfulness is the practice of being present in the moment and fully engaged with your surroundings. To practice mindfulness, it’s important to focus your attention on the present and avoid thoughts about the past or future. You can start by finding a quiet and comfortable space where you can sit or lie down. Take a few deep breaths and let go of any tension in your body.
Then, focus your attention on your breath and try to follow the sensation of inhaling and exhaling. If your mind starts to wander, gently guide it back to your breath. You can also try deep breathing exercises to calm your mind and body. Inhale deeply through your nose and exhale slowly through your mouth. Repeat this several times and try to focus your attention on your breath. With practice, mindfulness can help you reduce stress and anxiety and increase your mental health.
9. Connect with others.
One way to connect with others is by joining a community group or by volunteering for a cause you are passionate about. Community groups can be found through social media or local news sources, such as bulletin boards or community centers. Volunteering can be done through local organizations, schools, or hospitals. Connecting with others provides opportunities to meet other like-minded people who share similar interests and values.
By being active in such groups, you can make new friends, learn new skills, and contribute to your community, all while building a sense of belonging and purpose. It’s important to be genuine, open, and engaged in these activities to create meaningful connections with others and make a positive impact.
10. Simplify your life.
Minimalism is an approach to life that emphasizes simplicity, and it can help reduce stress and improve your mental health goals. To simplify your life, one way is to reduce clutter, which can be achieved by reducing the number of possessions you own and keeping only the things that truly bring you joy or serve a practical purpose. Simplifying your life may require reducing your obligations and commitments, such as social obligations or professional responsibilities that are not essential.
By cutting out these unnecessary stresses, you’ll free up more time and energy to focus on what truly matters to you, and you’ll be able to enjoy a more relaxed, fulfilling life. I often take a step back and just get rid of everything in my life I don’t need or haven’t used in a few months and let me tell you, the feeling of relief it brings. Man, it’s worth it.
Taking care of our mental health is a big part of living a fulfilling life. These were just a few things you can do to give your mental health a much needed boost. Remember, small steps can lead to big changes, so don’t be daunted by the challenge of improving your mental health goals and take it one day at a time.
By making a few lifestyle changes, you will be able to enjoy a happier, healthier life and ultimately, achieve your mental health goals with a positive mindset.
Your Wellness Warrior.