Five Ways to Improve Your Mental Health

Living a fulfilling life where you’re totally at peace with yourself and your surroundings, is, well…not that common. For most of us, this feeling comes and goes. One day we’re feeling super on it, I mean, actually creating to do lists and accomplishing what we write down (go you!), and like, totally killing it at the gym/in your relationship/your personal growth etc. Then, as quick as lightning strikes, you feel like your life is so chaotic with little to no sense of direction and you have no idea who you are or wtf you’re doing anymore. This is normal. You’re experiencing the natural ebbs and flows of this mysterious ever-changing life, and quite honestly, your unrest is most likely due to your desire to continuously improve or to live the life you’ve always wanted but have been to afraid to chase.

You see, your conscious mind thinks it’s in control of life-going to the gym twice a week, choosing a great group of friends to hangout with, developing healthy routines etc., but it’s not.  Your subconscious mind is the true keeper of all things peace, love, and ‘I have a meaningful life’. So, it’s no wonder that you’re feeling great for a few days at a time and then next thing you know you’re at a loss for why you feel so shitty. You subconscious is sneaking into your mind and ruffling up all your feathers to force you to go beyond what your conscious mind isn’t capable of accomplishing. It’s saying,

Hey you, wake up! Your 8-5 job and only seeing your friends once a month isn’t all that the universe has planned for you!

Luckily, there are ways you can help yourself get through these restless periods of time and uncover what your subconscious is trying to tell you.

1. Write

Don’t even think about what you’re going to write. Just carve out 10 minutes whenever you can and sit down with a pen and paper. Preferably, in a dedicated notebook that you can refer back to should you want. Sometimes, writing without boundaries can reveal little nuggets of information your subconscious has been holding hostage, just waiting for you to uncover.

2. Go for a walk or hike – alone – in nature

Yes, I said it, alone! It’s not as scary as you think to go off into the world by yourself. I promise nobody will be wondering why you’re flying solo (it’s all in your head!). Try not to listen to music on this adventure, instead, listen to the natural sounds around you. But, most importantly, listen to yourself. Your mind will start communicating with you on this journey, and you won’t have anyone there to distract you from facing those thoughts, the only thing you should allow to disrupt yourself are the beautiful trees, creeks, birds, and mountains that (hopefully!) surround you in that moment. I promise, you’ll have at least one moment of clarity during this time that helps you see things in your life from a new perspective.

3. Change up your routine

Take a new route home. Go to a different breakfast spot. Read for 10 minutes in the morning instead of scrolling through Instagram. Small changes that shake up your daily routine show you things you never knew were right in front of you. Things that may or may not lead you to some kind of awesome discovery that the world has been planning for you to find all along.

4. Do that thing you’ve been meaning to do

Ya know, that thing you’ve been curious about trying out but talk yourself out of every time? Well, there’s a reason you can’t stop thinking about it. For example, say you’ve been interested in trying out a yoga class, but you’re nervous about being a beginner and not knowing what to do when you’re in there and accidentally farting in downward dog and then the whole class looks at you (not that I have first hand experience with this or anything…) Or maybe, you’ve been needing to take your car in to get your brakes fixed and have been putting it off as long as possible. Yet, everyday you think about how you really need to suck it up and get it done. Imagine how much better you will feel when you don’t have that pesky thought creeping into your mind every single day. Do the things you’ve been meaning to do, and you will feel your stress and anxiety and what-if’s melts away.

5. Don’t be so hard on yourself

Ya, you! Quit being so hard on yourself for not having the life you envisioned having at this age. Or for not wanting to get up and go for a run this morning. For not knowing what your career is going to be for the rest of you life or not having a ring on your finger. Your life is exactly where it should be right now. Even if you’re still living at moms house or feel like you’re having a pre-mid life crisis, try and find the good in these situations. “I may not have my dream body/job/significant other/house/lifestyle right now but I am saving money/learning how to be alone/sleeping more/enjoying new foods etc.” There is always a yin (positive) to the yang (negative) you are so desperately fighting, find it! Catch yourself as soon as you start having those feelings and tell yourself (out loud if possible), “I am exactly where I should be right now”. Say it even if you don’t believe it yet.

So, what do all of these things have in common?

They all ask you to get out of your comfort zone.

Your subconscious is pulling at your ears trying to get your attention so you’ll leave your comfort zone to start living the life you actually want to be living, which ultimately improves your overall mental health. The ebbs and flows of uncertainty may never fully subside, but by listening to your whole self and practicing tips like these, they will be easier to manage and you will gain a deeper understanding of why you’re feeling what you’re feeling.

So, cheers to getting one step closer to living a peaceful and meaningful life more days out of the year than not…you got this!

4 thoughts on “Five Ways to Improve Your Mental Health

  1. Hilary says:

    This is just what I needed to hear today! As I am currently checking a million things off my to-do list and very slowly at that, I feel myself crumbling under the stress of the grind. However, as soon as I opened this article, the stress immediately lifted from my shoulders and I am ready to continue onward! Thank you for this Andrea!


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