The year 2020 has taught us many lessons. One of the most important lesson we have learnt that always give importance to your mental health, and never ignore any warning signs.
You’ve heard it before, but we’ll say it again: it’s important for your mental health to prioritize your basic needs, such as eating, sleeping, and physical activity.
Caring about our bodies will boost our mood, levels of stress, self-esteem and help alleviate anxiety. Not sure about where to start?
Better Mental Health
To fix the basics, Here are a few techniques you can use:
- Sleep: The goal is to get 7-9 hours of sleep every night. Turn off all appliances at least 1 hour before you go to bed; set a timer on your phone. Choose calming practices such as reading, journaling, drawing, yoga or do meditation to help your body unwind, instead of scrolling on your computer.
- Eating: Respect the signs of hunger, and strive to consume at least one distraction-free meal. Consider making snacks in advance to keep yourself full and concentrated if you find yourself feeling exhausted or hungry.
- Physical activity: Make physical activity more enjoyable. It doesn’t have to be strenuous or burn a lot of calories to work out. It is just as good for your mental and physical health to shift your body by walking, yoga or low-impact exercises.
Dr Gowri Kulkarni, Head of Medical Operations, MediBuddy- DocsApp shared with Healthwire Media about the role of diet, sleep, and exercise to keep yourself mentally fit.
Dr Kulkarni said, “The “three pillars of health” – Sleep, exercise and diet are not only for staying fit physically, they contribute to good mental health. Modifications of lifestyle factors and diet are recognized as potential therapeutic options and help maintain good mental health.”
“The research has found that eating well, getting regular exercise, and making sure to clock enough high-quality sleep each night can help boost psychological well-being and reduce the risk of conditions like depression and anxiety. An individual should prioritize all three for optimal health and longevity; However out of these three factors, sleep plays the strongest predictor of mental well-being. Hence, taking extra care to work on your sleep habits could be the most beneficial strategy for keeping your spirits high and minimizing stress, worry, and mood dips,” Dr Kulkarni added.
Strategies to manage mental well-being
Along with a good diet, sleep and exercise, Dr Kulkarni suggested some strategies to manage mental well-being–
- Feel free to feel your feelings– Do not be afraid to reach out to someone you trust for support if you’re struggling. You will help during the hard times by finding communication and support from friends, family or professionals.
- Intentionally employ coping strategies– Instead of waiting till the point where you’re completely overwhelmed, ensure you unplug from work and recharge constantly.
- Be fortified by remembering the importance and meaning of your work
- Do not be afraid to seek professional help.