mental health
Health & Wellness

Why taking time for yourself is vital for your mental health

It is very easy to get swept away with the constraints of a working life and excusing tiredness and fatigue for ‘normal’ feelings. However, this is not the case. Burnout is now a widely recognised issue, with the BBC describing it as feelings of exhaustion, mental detachment from one’s job and poorer performance at work. They go on to say that burnout is best treated by lifestyle changes – but what can we do to give ourselves the mental break we deserve? 

4 things we can do to give ourselves a mental break

Keep active – It is a well-known fact that exercise can boost your self-esteem, help you concentrate, sleep and feel better. A huge benefit of keeping active is its ability to manage stress and anxiety. Doing exercise temporarily releases cortisol, which helps us manage our stress and focus on the positive movement we are doing for ourselves. 

Take a break – A change of scenery and pace is great for improving your mental health. It could be as simple as a walk to the shop in your lunch break or having the day off to go somewhere interesting, like jumping on train train to York. Switching up your normal routine is a great way to reset the brain and feel refreshed. 

Talk about your feelings – Admitting you’re struggling with your mental health is still seen as a taboo subject, with many people bottling up their feelings – subsequently making the problem worse. Whether it be talking to a family member, talking to your boss or talking to an anonymous support lines, someone is always there to lift the load.

Do something you love – If there is an activity you love to do, a film you love to watch or a friend you love to spend time with, make time in your schedule to do the things that make you happy. This will refresh your brain, helping you to cope.

How can we ensure this becomes a part of our lives? 

It is all well and good making the occasional plan to help us in the short term, but we want to make sure this becomes a lifestyle change. The best way to do this is to make a schedule of your week. Include all compulsory elements, like work, but then add in some moments of happiness for you. By visualising the time you will spend looking after yourself, your week appears less daunting – helping you to manage your mental health before the week has begun. 

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