Ever since the holidays, I have been in a little bit of a funk. I think a huge part comes from the natural hustle and bustle of the holiday season – the cramming of family gatherings and trying to make sure you remember everything that you need to accomplish. However, the holiday season this year was something that was even more draining on my mental health. That said, I’ve been trying to do a lot to help try to ensure that my mental health is my top priority. Here are some of the steps that I’ve taken:
- Workout More: Exercise is hands down one of the best things that one can do when their stressed out due to the endorphins that pulse through the body. My goal this year, as you probably guessed in my post about my New Year’s Resolutions, is to do workouts that I enjoy. Whenever I do a cardiovascular workout, I always feel much better about whatever is thrown at me. Therefore, I am trying to include working out in my regular routine. Plus, you know, it’s good for your physical health as well – aka an added bonus.
- Yoga: I’ve been making sure that yoga is added to my regular routine. I love yoga because not only is stretching really great for my body, but it also centers me. It makes me focus on that moment and what feels good for me, and to be present. For me, stress can overcome my entire body. That said, having a practice like yoga that brings me down and stops me from overthinking – at least for twenty minutes – is something that helps me remember to breathe. Just cause, you know, sometimes I forget.
I love to write. However, one may think that I journal more frequently than I actually do. That is until recently. I decided to just start journaling, and writing down anything that I was feeling in that moment – moments of grief, moments of anger, moments of anxiety, sadness, etc. I also use my journal to log things that actually went right or moments – big or small – that cause happiness. Getting into the practice of writing things down has been therapeutic for me because it releases all of the negative emotions instead of holding them in. Which you know, is definitely a good thing.
- Going on Dates By Myself:
Yes, I am in a relationship. But, you can bet your last dollar that I am still taking myself on a date. Most of the time, it is a trip to the coffee shop. I bring my book and I sit and enjoy a latte. For an hour, I focus on only the story of the book that I am reading. And, it is amazing. This is something that I challenge you with – even those who have boyfriends. Take yourself on a date. It can be, as I said, to get a latte. Or, it can be to get your nails done, go to the bookstore, or whatever the case may be. That said, make a date on the calendar and go out on a date with you. Trust me, you’ll enjoy it.
- Treat yourself: I knew that this past week was going to be a stressful one going into it. That said, I decided to purchase something a little extra special at the grocery store this week – a lovely cake. The plan was to eat a little bit of it every night to help me get through. And, it helped. I savored every bite of that cake. Having that little treat was something that I looked forward to after a long day. That said, there is something about a carrot after a stressful time. Carrots, for those of you who don’t know, are something to look forward to. That may be the cake that I purchased. Or, it may be a trip to the store you love and purchasing something you’ve had your eye on after a long week. Whatever makes you happy and gets you through, you go for it.
- Listening to Podcasts: Last but certainly not least, I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts lately. What I like about them is that they are treats to listen to – and can serve as background noise during tasks I don’t enjoy. Since I enjoy listening to the podcasts, I am able to look forward to the tasks I dread just because I get to listen to the podcast that I enjoy.