Five ways to help your mental health

Studies show that 1 in 5 adults in the United States struggles with some type of mental health disorder (1). With that in mind, it’s essential to find new ways to improve your daily routine and make substantial life changes that help you improve your well-being.

 

Let’s take a closer look at five ways you can improve your mental health today:

 

Prioritize exercising

Choosing to make changes to your lifestyle, like prioritizing daily exercising activities, can help improve your mental health (2). Exercise has proven to treat symptoms of ADHD, stress, anxiety, depression, and provide you with health-enhancing benefits. By adding just 30 minutes of exercise to your daily routine, three days a week can significantly impact your energy levels, your mental health, and improve your blood circulation (3).

 

If you are unsure where to start, try adding some of these aerobic activities into your daily or weekly routine to get your body moving.

 

  • Jogging
  • Hiking
  • Cycling
  • Swimming
  • Dancing
  • Jump rope
  • Brisk Walking

 

If you can’t find time to add workouts or activities into your day, you can always do more around the house to get your heart rate up. Consider:

 

  • House chores
  • Yardwork
  • Gardening
  • Mowing your lawn
  • Childcare

 

 

Take up a new hobby

Finding a new hobby that you enjoy can help add purpose back to your life and provide you with an opportunity to unwind, relax, and focus on yourself. Here are a few hobbies and activities you can try at home:

 

  • Painting or drawing
  • Journaling or creating writing
  • Yoga
  • Music
  • Meditation
  • Cooking or baking
  • Pottery

 

These are just a few examples of how you can start prioritizing new activities you enjoy and making more time for yourself throughout the week. These leisure activities can help promote relaxation, restoration, and positive emotions among individuals (4).

 

Practice deep breathing

Do you ever notice your breathing patterns? Taking some time from your day to focus on your breathing can be a great way to relax, lower your stress levels, and relieve unwanted tension (5).

 

If you're unsure where to start, you can try belly breathing. You’ll want to sit in a comfortable position. Then, put one of your hands on your belly and another one on your chest. From there, you’ll want to take a deep breath through your nose and feel the air push out of your belly. Repeat this 3-6 times every day.

 

There are many breathing exercises you can try implementing into your daily routine after that.

 

Listen to your body and pay close attention to how you feel after to see if breathing exercises are a good fit for your lifestyle.

 

Maintain a healthy diet

The foods you choose to put in your body play an integral role in how you feel about yourself and your overall health. Studies show that there's a connection between the foods in our diet and the emotions we have (6). Choosing to be more mindful about the foods you eat can help you feel better, physically and mentally.

 

If you’re looking to make more nutritious choices, you can start by eliminating processed foods, adding more vegetables into your diet, and focusing on whole foods.

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