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As society continues to evolve, the conversation surrounding mental health and wellness continues to do the same. More people are recognizing the serious nature of mental illnesses and how important it is to prioritize mental wellness. If you’re not sure where to start, consider the following steps.
1. Recognize Your Triggers
When people talk about feeling “triggered”, they’re typically referring to the feeling of pain when a certain thought, event or person enters their presence. Pay attention to how you feel when you have to do something you don’t want to do. If you feel a strong sense of fear or crippling dread, don’t ignore those feelings. When you’re triggered, use those signals to show you what you need to face, change or eliminate.
If you’re triggered anytime the holidays come around, don’t just assume that you hate the holidays. It might just be that you don’t like spending time with certain people during the holiday season. With this knowledge, you can either learn to create memories that don’t involve those people or learn to adjust your expectations when you’re around them.
2. Take Time Away
When life becomes too much, people tend to spiral out of control. Before you get to that point of the downward spiral, take time away to get professional help. While you can check yourself into a mental health facility, know that it doesn’t have to be one that resembles the scary ones you see in the movies. There are beautiful luxury rehab facilities that look and feel like vacations you’d want to take at any time of the year. By taking the time to get away from it all and reset your mind with the help of professionals, you’ll restore your sanity as you get equipped with the tools you’ll need to navigate life moving forward.
3. Invest in Therapy Sessions
One of the best parts of the global conversation surrounding mental health is that more people are normalizing therapy. Therapy isn’t just for people when they’re at the end of their rope. It’s for everyone. Think of your therapist as a trainer for your mind. Yes, your physical trainer can help you lose weight. However, they can also help you get into the best shape of your life. The same sentiment holds true for a mental health professional in therapy. They can help you navigate through life’s challenges and changes. They can help you process the internal conversations that are keeping you stuck or unfulfilled.
4. Limit Your Time on Social Media
While social media apps like Instagram and Facebook are helpful when you’d like to connect with family members and friends, social media can be a bit of a two-edged sword. There are a lot of people who blame the apps for the drastic decline in mental wellness for millions of people. Social media can exacerbate feelings of comparison, self-loathing and low self-esteem. It’s also known to trigger loneliness in a lot of people.
If you don’t want to delete the apps altogether, just closely monitor the amount of time you spend on social media apps. Set a timer on your phone. Once the timer goes off, you’ll know that it’s time to close all of the apps and stop scrolling. There are so many other productive and fulfilling ways to spend your precious time. Whether you’re reading a great book, coloring or trying a new recipe, fill that time with hobbies and activities that will stimulate your brain in a different yet positive way.
One of the reasons why people love to exercise so much is because it can be a form of therapy in its own way. It’s an excellent way to relieve stress. Exercise is known to help you release endorphins. Endorphins are considered the “feel good” hormone. Whether you take a long walk after work or engage in a heart-pumping cardio boxing session before you start your day, make sure exercise plays an integral role in your journey of mental wellness.
You can’t escape your mind. It’s a part of you. You might try to approach life with a “mind over matter” mindset, but if your mind isn’t well, the results won’t be great. By doing the work of prioritizing your mental health, you will directly impact your quality of life and the way you experience it on a daily basis.