World Mental Health Day takes place on 10 October and it is an opportunity to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world.
As life gets busier and pressure mount, it is very easy for anxiety to hit and for stress to spiral out of control.
“I find a full time job, as well as a collage course and planning a wedding can sometimes just be too much.”
“I have three children under five and I admit, I get overwhelmed and stressed and don’t know which way to turn.”
“My business is growing really fast and my children are hitting their teens. As a single mum I find that life is really busy, stress builds and I just need to step away from time to time to regroup.”
Talking is always a good place to start. We aren’t saying book into therapy, but simply chatting to a close friend, family member or partner about how you are feeling can help. It is amazing how someone else will be able to look at things from another perspective and come up with ideas you hadn’t thought about.
Make a list. We all have a lot to do and life is busy, but if your mind is constantly busy and you don’t know where to start, nothing will get done. Work out what you have to do, what can wait and what just isn’t necessary at all.
Eat properly. Skipping breakfast, grabbing a burger for lunch and drinking too many energy drinks might give you a brief buzz but it won’t help keep your mood stable and body healthy. Aim to eat at least five portions of fruit and vegetables today, add good fats and protein to your meals, keep caffeine and alcohol to a minimum and drink plenty of water.
Ask for help. Yes, we know we are meant to have it all and do it all, but that simply isn’t reality. If things are getting on top of you, ask a friend to look after the children for an hour, employ a cleaner or join a support group to take the edge off. No one is super human and sometimes admitting this can help break the perfection cycle that is so easy to get into.
Do some exercise. Being stuck at a computer all day, driving to the office and being glued to social media all means we do less to get those magical endorphins pumping around our bodies. Jog in the park, swim in the sea or go to a body pump class with a friend and you will soon see a difference in your mood and waistline.
Relaxation techniques are a really helpful way to manage stress. We know they help but we don’t always take them on board, because we are too busy. Finding time to relax means your body and mind can recuperate and recover and you can generally feel calmer. Whether you read a book, have a warm bath, meditate, do some yoga or get an early night, all of these things give you the head space you need to get away from it all and think about you for a while.
If you find you simply aren’t coping, book an appointment with your GP so you can talk to a medical professional and look at the best options for you.
Good luck and keep calm.