Mental health…we’ve all been there and we’ve all struggled with ourselves at different points in our lives. It’s a challenge that thankfully, in this day and age, we can feel more comfortable acknowledging and claiming it than ever before. This movement to bring to light mental health and release it from the strong grasp of unspoken table topics and uncomfortable taboos has allowed us to start addressing, coping, and understanding this complex and extraordinarily varied issue. This past week, we reached out to our followers, both online and in person, to put together a mini guide on how to deal with mental health. After trying and testing a number of these strategies, we decided to share them with you in our own effort to bring the important issue of mental health further into the light.
5 Ways to Manage Mental Health
We all can relate, as navigators of the challenging space that is the twenty-first century, it can be easy to lose your mental balance. From dealing with the stressors of daily life to finding work-life balance or managing the pressures and expectations of family and society, it’s easy to understand how one can get overwhelmed and struggle with issues such as anxiety or depression. Our first SkinOwl mental health tip was recommended by so many as not only a way to cope with and prevent mental struggles but also promote a healthy and balanced mind.
Here at SkinOwl, we understand the strong and deep impact meditation can have on the mind. Whether you’re struggling with mental health or not, meditation is a great way to stay grounded, to clear your mind, and stay motivated. Whether you’ve never tried meditation or you’re a meditation guru, here are some apps that’ll help guide you.
Headspace and Calm are both particularly great because they contain different albums that target specific things from anxiety to difficulty sleeping and everything in between. We recommend every night, as one winds down from the day, to sit down for a five to ten-minute meditation. This little ritual will help reduce anxiety, promote calmness, and ease apprehension for tasks or events that lie ahead.
2. Developing a Selfcare Routine
Sometimes taking care of your body can, in turn, help you take care of your mind. Doing small things to care for yourself when you’re struggling with a mental health issue can help you create a deeper emotional connection with your body, often relieving anxiety attributed to body image or the feeling of inadequacy. It’s these small routines that help center you and distract you from the triggers that are causing your anxiety.
Here at SkinOwl, we like to use our Marigold Glow Facial Steam in our selfcare routine. While steaming, we’re not only caring for our bodies, but we are also taking five minutes to have a little meditation session, deepening our breath and letting the calming aromas of lavender, rose, and chamomile ease our body and mind.
3. Tackle One Goal at a Time
When dealing with depression or anxiety, it’s the little things that are often difficult. Sometimes accomplishing minor activities can be challenging, so setting one big goal for the day is a great way to reduce anxiousness, get motivated, and, at the end the day, feel accomplished. Feeling up for a challenge? Set yourself one selfcare goal, one errand or chore goal such as doing the laundry, and one professional or work-related goal every day. I’ve found that blocking off time to dedicate to a single task helps you focus in, get productive, and relieve your mind of the other potential stressors or anxiety triggers.
4. Understanding Your Body
Our bodies are so incredibly complex, so half the battle is being able to understand how your own body reacts to specific stimuli, whether that be certain relationships, activities, foods, etc. Taking time to tune in and interpret what your body needs is especially important when you’re trying to stay mentally balanced.
If you’re a woman, try Glow, a women’s health app that tracks your menstrual cycle, providing valuable information about not only your cycle but what that means. This app provides insight to help you understand your actions, reactions, and hormonal triggers based on where you are in your cycle. Perhaps your anxiety or depression and your cycle are impacting each other, so understanding how your body is operating is key to understanding your mental health. What makes this platform even more unique is offers a community of women who you can chat with about your period, boyfriend problems…anything.
5. Taking Three Deep Breaths
When you’re feeling anxiety coming on, a trick a close friend of mine told me about was to take three deep breaths. Your first breath is to take a moment to understand what’s going on in your body. Maybe your breath has been short, meaning that you’re perhaps tired or not feeling well. Your second breath is to acknowledge how you’re feeling at that moment. Your third breath is to determine what’s important at this moment and to recognize that it’s more important to be in this physical moment than to be in your head and overwhelmed in your anxiety.
Looking for more tips on coping with mental health? Here are a few things some of our followers shared with us on Instagram. Thank you to everyone who participated.
What do I do to ease my anxiety or depression?
“I sit with my dog and think about how simple life can be.”
“I breathe and count to fifty. I don’t stop no matter what.”
“I call my Mom and she helps talk me off the ledge.”
“I grab my Peppermint essential oil, sit in silence and just breathe.”
“I put on a funny television show, like Friends, which helps me get me out of my head and return to reality.”
What would you tell someone who was stuck in the throes of anxiety or depression?
“I remind myself that anxiety is a reaction, not a state of mind. I’m not going to be in this place forever. I think about the things I felt and the things I was doing before the anxiety attack hit. It helps remind me that it won’t last forever.”
“I would tell them to repeat the following: I am the sky. Everything else is the weather.”
“Sit with your dog or cat for a little and just breathe. Animals pick up on our feelings and have the power to change them.”
“Download the CALM app and do a specific meditation for anxiety. It helps to remind ourselves we also aren’t alone and that so many people are in your shoes. We will overcome and fight our fears and doubts.”
How do you manage your mental health? Share your tips and tricks by commenting on this blog post or sending us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.