Surprising Mental Health Boosts

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At the moment, many of us are struggling with our mental health. You might have been spending most of your time in your home, especially if you are in a high-risk group. You might be worried about your future health and employment, and the Covid-19 pandemic may have hurt your finances. All of these worries, as well as spending less time with our friends and family members, means that many people are feeling anxious, stressed out, or depressed. 

If you’ve had a previously diagnosed mental health condition, such as depression or an eating disorder, you may be struggling with a relapse, or worried about warning signs presenting themselves. Even if you have always had stable mental health and consider yourself to be a happy and calm person, you may be feeling a little edgy. 

This is only to be expected. But what can you do about it? Unfortunately, there is no magical quick fix, and it’s often a combination of things that have the most significant effects. 

The Obvious Boosts

If you are struggling with your mood or worried about your mental health, there are some obvious treatments, which certainly shouldn’t be overlooked. Improving your diet, getting more exercise, avoiding stressful situations, and speaking with your friends and family about your worries can all be effective. If these aren’t working, you should talk to your doctor about medical treatment or therapies to help. 

But, not all mental health boosts are so obvious. There are many small changes that you can make to your lifestyle to help yourself, some of which may surprise you. Here’s a look at some of the perhaps more surprising boosts. 

Get a Pet

Pets, and especially large, affectionate animals like dogs from can be unbelievably good for your mental health and mood. 

When you own a dog, you’ve always got a friend, someone to talk to, and look after. You’ve got purpose and responsibilities, someone who needs you. When you have a dog at home, you get out more, getting fresh air and exercise, you meet new people, and you have a companion through the tough times. Even the simple act of stroking a dog or other soft animal can be relaxing and therapeutic. 

Stay Off Social Media
Social media can be a useful tool. It can even be good for your mental health, giving you a way to communicate with friends and family, and remain connected with people that you might not see as often as you may like. It can even be a way to make new friends, and in stressful times, or when you are living in a lockdown, these online relationships can be crucial. 

But, it’s not all positive. Frequent social media use can lead to feelings of jealousy or inadequacy. It can even become an addiction, and it’s all too easy to get drawn into negativity online. 

If you need a mental health boost, staying off social media, or at least limiting your interactions to people that you trust, can be a big help. 

Enjoy a Morning Coffee

We hear a lot about the negatives of coffee. The side effects of caffeine addiction and the negative impact it can have on our health and quality of sleep. But, believe it, or not the occasional coffee can boost your mental health. A relaxing coffee can boost your energy levels and help you to feel more alert in the mornings, both of which can improve your mood. 

Give Journaling a Go

Often we struggle with our emotions when we feel as though we don’t have an outlet, and many of us are guilty of bottling things up. If you feel uncomfortable confiding in people, or you aren’t yet ready to say things out loud journaling, and writing down all of your thoughts and feelings can actually be extremely effective. 

Love Someone

Love is a great boost. But, giving is often as beneficial as receiving. Show someone that you care about them, with a few small gestures, and you might find that you begin to feel more positive. 

Be Kind

The same goes for kindness. We often feel better about ourselves when we do nice things for other people, and often our kindness is contagious. 

Eat More Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate contains flavonoids, caffeine, and theobromine which work together to make you feel more alert and focused. This can improve your mood, and help you to process anything that you may be feeling. Just remember, treats should be enjoyed in moderation, as part of a balanced diet. 

Turn the Heating Down

Sleep is absolutely crucial to your mental health, but not just how much of it you get. The quality of your sleep is also important. The prime conditions for good sleep are between 60 and 67 degrees Fahrenheit, so if your bedroom is too hot or cold, consider making some changes. 

Do Some Coloring

Adult coloring has seen a huge surge in popularity over the last ten years, with books available in a massive range of different styles and designs. This popularity is largely attributed to the effect that coloring can have on your stress levels and mental health. 

Sitting down for an hour with nothing but your coloring book can be a great way to escape from your worries and concerns. Focus only on the therapeutic properties of doing something incredibly simple and creative, and you’ll soon find you feel more relaxed than usual. You might get a similar feeling of escapism from reading, or watching easy TV shows. 

Dance Like Nobody's Looking

Dancing around the house while you are doing your housework is great exercise, but it also gives you a quick mood boost. And, the best thing about dancing at home is that most of the time, no one is watching. 

Practice Gratitude

Get into the habit of gratitude. Spend time each day thinking about all of the things that you are grateful for, and you might soon find that you have started to feel far more positive about your life. 

Getting into good habits, and making small lifestyle changes when you need to, is often the best way to boost your mental health at home. But, remember, if you are worried, or really struggling, see your doctor and talk to a loved one. 

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