We all have a mental health just as we have a physical health. I wish I’d known this years ago; I would have taken the time to check up on myself.
The truth is, while someone looking after their physical health is obvious, mental health is not.
How often does a colleague at lunchtime say, “I’m going to do some self-care”? They don’t. But many would say, “I’m off to the gym”.
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While the results of working out can produce visible results in losing fat or changing body shape, the benefits of self-care are invisible. They are, however, just as important if not more so.
Self-care includes any actions you intentionally take towards looking after your mental and emotional health. This could be going for a walk, practising yoga or meditation.
We’re lucky here on the Gold Coast. We’re surrounded by endless, beautiful opportunities for self-care. Whether you’re strolling along the coastline or absorbing the goodness of nature in Mount Tamborine, all it takes is putting time aside. We’re spoilt for choice with options, they don’t cost money, and we don’t have to commute to a location that can help us embrace stillness and make us feel calm. They’re everywhere!
7 ways to get started:
- Get organised. Scheduling in me-time is just as important as any other meeting you put in your diary. So, if you need to allocate time, do it.
- Plan your meals. If you rely on having the energy at the end of the day to put food in front of yourself, takeaways and fast food can often be the easy choice. Shop at the weekend and ensure you have supplies for a balanced, healthy diet.
- Get active. This doesn’t mean you have to join a gym, spend a fortune or suddenly pretend to have a passion for hard-core workouts. Take a walk, enjoy your surroundings and you’ll feel the benefits.
- Sleep. Our bodies rejuvenate while we sleep. It’s important to get into the routine of going to bed at a regular time and aiming for 8 hours a night.
- Find your passion. Many of us get swept up in the day-to-day whirlwind of our everyday lives and forget simple things that fulfil us. Reconnect with listening to music, reading or gardening, whatever it is that brings a smile to your face.
- Learn to say no. Boundaries are essential for self-care. You can’t say yes to everything and everyone. Don’t feel guilty for putting aside for you.
- Connect. The real benefit of setting boundaries is that you can really enjoy connecting with your favourite humans when you feel like a chat. Never under-estimate the power of human connection.