Mental health is often put on the back burner to physical health, especially when we are occupied doing other things. However, it is important to take care of your mental health before you start experiencing symptoms of severe stress, anxiety, or depression. Fortunately, there are many things that you can do for your own mental health that cost little to nothing. While you should always consult with a professional if you feel you need to, here are some outside-the-box ways to help improve your mental health.
Experts agree that being outside in the sunlight and fresh air is good for one's mood and overall mental health. Some ways to spend more time outdoors include:
• Walking around the block
• Going camping
• Eating your lunch outside
• Trying your hand at nature photography
• Reading at the park
Always take the proper precautions when spending time in the sun or around wildlife.
If you can’t spend as much time outdoors as you’d like, add some houseplants to your home to bring more nature to you. If you’re concerned about maintaining your houseplants and keeping them alive, you can learn more about them here. Houseplants are also good for keeping the air in your home fresh.
People practice yoga for its many benefits, such as reduced stress, increased flexibility, and boosted heart health. Yoga is also a low-impact workout that people of all abilities can take part in. Some types of yoga include hatha yoga, Bikram yoga, and restorative yoga, each with its own unique practices and benefits to the individual. Get started with group or private sessions with instructor Tatiana Stollman!
Tai chi is similar to yoga in that it helps reduce stress and provides physical benefits. However, it differs in that participants execute dance-like moves rather than poses. A tai chi routine is easy to incorporate by itself or alongside an existing fitness program.
Relocating can provide mental health benefits such as a fresh start, the opportunity to form new social connections, and a change of environment that can reduce stress levels and promote personal growth. If you’re considering relocating to the Oakland area, check online rental listings (there are currently over 500 apartments available).
Think About a Career Change
Sometimes, dissatisfaction in the workplace can lead to mental health issues. If this is the case, consider signing up for an online degree program to help you change careers. Online programs allow you to go to school while still working or looking after family members. Check to make sure any degree program is accredited and compare the tuition and fees of several different programs.
Start a Business
As an alternative to changing careers, consider starting your own business. Starting a business can provide mental health benefits such as a sense of purpose, control, and accomplishment, which can increase feelings of self-worth, reduce stress levels, and improve overall well-being. You may want to learn how to start an LLC in California. This business structure provides benefits such as limited liability protection, tax advantages, and increased credibility for small business owners
Declutter Your Home
A messy, dirty, or cluttered home can exacerbate conditions such as stress and anxiety. Clean a little bit each day as you are able to avoid letting messes pile up to the point of becoming overwhelming. You could also consider hiring a cleaning service to come to your home once a month or so. It may be well worth it if you can afford to do so.
Consider Working From Home
If you are able, working from home can have several benefits to mental health. One of these is no longer having to commute, which is often the most stressful part of going into the office or other in-person work environment. Use the extra time you have from not commuting to practice some of these mental health tips.
Start Art Therapy
Art therapy involves using drawing, painting, or sculpture to express your emotions in a healthy way. Whereas traditional talk therapy uses words to work through how you are feeling, art therapy uses the creative process to reach a similar end goal.
Volunteer work is not only a good way to feel good about yourself by helping the local community, but is a way to meet people with similar interests as well. Many organizations need volunteer help.
Consider taking up one or more of these activities to take care of your mental health. Starting a business, practicing yoga, volunteering, and relocating are just a few suggestions that could make all the difference in your well-being.