This is a guest post from Stephanie Haywood. I appreciate Stephanie reaching out to contribute to this blog and I want to encourage her and others on their writing journeys.
You can find more articles like this from her website, MyLifeBoost.com.
Few things in life are more important than your mental health, yet most people never invest in keeping it in the best shape possible. Below are eight ideas to improve your mental well-being so you’re happier and healthier overall.
1. Forest Bathing
Also known as Shinrin-yoku, forest bathing is gaining popularity worldwide. It’s a deep-breathing meditation that uses all five senses to immerse yourself in nature. Forest bathing improves immune function and lowers stress levels. Go for a walk among trees – or take a dip in a natural pool if it’s summertime.
2. Play Soft Music
If you want to lift your mood, put on some soft music. Audio-Technica notes that just listening can produce a calming effect and relax your muscles. Similarly, play some soft music when you’re feeling angry or frustrated and see if it doesn’t help calm those emotions down. Sometimes, it can work even better with your eyes closed.
3. Clear Your Space and Make it Beautiful
Declutter your home to create a healthy atmosphere. Invest in fresh art pieces that reflect your style. Keep what brings you joy — and then embrace it. If your workspace is messy, unorganized, or cluttered, you could be harming your mental health and creativity.
4. Get Some Exercise
Exercising outside is a great way to clear your head and get some fresh air. Hiking, swimming, running, and biking are great ways to break up your day. If you’re interested in an indoor workout that’s just as good for you, try taking a yoga class.
And, remember, exercise does not have to be intense or aerobic – slow peaceful walks can also help your mental health.
Meditation is a powerful practice that can help you reduce stress, increase focus and creativity, or even treat certain mental health conditions. If you’re not already familiar with meditation practices such as mindfulness meditation, try checking out some online meditation resources to get started.
6. Take Up a Hobby You Used to Love
New hobbies are more than just distractions; they can keep your mind sharp and relieve stress. For example, quilting uses parts of your brain that you might not engage in on a daily basis, and while you’re having fun and doing something good for yourself, you could also be boosting your mental health.
7. Help Others
Look for ways to help others, starting in your own town. You can start with volunteering at a local soup kitchen or contributing non-perishable items to a food pantry. Also you can reach out to A Warm Heart, which gives a child a real chance to go to school and to learn to read.
You could also take it up a notch and start your own organization to meet a need in your community and enhance your mental health at the same time. If you’re a nonprofit business, it’s easier to apply for grants and government assistance. When forming a nonprofit company, you’ll need to draft bylaws that spell out how the organization will run. Bylaws include how the company operates in board meetings and conflict-of-interest policies.
8. Upgrade Your Skills
Returning to school for a degree can help pave the road to future success. Online degree programs make it possible to complete a degree while working full-time or caring for a family. If you’re looking for an online school, make sure it’s accredited and offers affordable tuition.
Often, you can audit courses, which means that you can avoid the tests and just focus on learning.
If you’re looking for new ways to improve your mental health, why not try some of these activities? You might find one or two things you enjoy.
Stephanie Haywood is happy to be living her best life. Personal development and self-care gave her a boost when she needed it most, and now she works to share the gift of self-knowledge, self-care, and self-actualization with everyone who visits MyLifeBoost.com
Thank you Stephanie.
Until next time, let our warm hearts soar!
And thank you for caring that little bit extra – it really makes a big difference.