This time of year can feel gloomy, and the change in seasons can affect your body’s serotonin and your mood. People may also experience Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), a type of depression that affects people during specific seasons, often in the fall and winter. It’s important to make your mental wellness a priority. Here are three ways you can focus on mental wellness this month.
1. Try to Keep a Positive Mindset
Staying positive doesn’t mean ignoring feelings like anger or sadness; it means not constantly focusing on bad things that have happened or things you’re worried about, and instead focusing on the good things and being optimistic. Practicing gratitude can help you stay positive by helping you focus on and be thankful for the good things in your life. These can be big or small, from being thankful for loved ones to being thankful for a sunny day. You can even write down the things you’re grateful for each day to remind yourself of the good in your life when you’re feeling down. Setting goals and writing down the day’s achievements can help you focus on your accomplishments, which can help you keep a positive mindset.
2. Make Time for Activities You Enjoy
Spending time doing what you enjoy is a form of self-care that can support your mental wellness and promote a work-life balance. Talking with friends and family can help you feel supported and connected to a community. You could also get involved in your local area by volunteering or joining a community organization. Relaxing activities like deep breathing exercises and meditation can help reduce stress. Enjoying hobbies like reading, journaling, listening to music, and other healthy activities can help you feel like your entire day isn’t consumed by work. Having work-life balance can help reduce stress, prevent burnout, and even make you a better employee when you’re at work.
3. Take Care of Your Physical Health
Physical health and mental health impact each other. Prioritizing your physical health can improve your mental health and overall well-being. Be sure to get enough sleep each night. Lack of sleep can affect your mood, causing you to become angry or annoyed more easily and increasing your risk of developing depression. Drink plenty of water every day and make healthy meals and snacks part of your daily routine. Aim to do some form of physical activity every day, even if it’s something low-impact like going for a walk. Exercise can improve your mood and help you feel less stressed.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask for Help
Prioritizing your mental wellness is important this month and throughout the year. If you’re struggling with your mental health, seek help from a mental health professional. If you or a loved one experience a mental health or behavioral health crisis, a crisis response center or urgent psychiatric center – such as those provided by Connections Health Solutions – can help. Click here to find a Connections Health Solutions center near you.