Improving Mental Health in the New Year: Focus on What You've Got

Improving Mental Health in the New Year: Focus on What You've Got

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Planning out your year and keeping new year’s resolutions is very exciting at first since we’re turning a new page to ring in the year ahead. However, it can get quite disappointing when we can’t take action on some goals we set, or if we suffer setbacks that steer us farther away from our resolutions. This leaves us feeling down, causing negative thoughts that result in demotivation and poor mental health.

What can you do to help keep yourself composed and moving forward toward your goals? Here are ways you can have improved mental health this new year and lean toward positivity, with or without resolutions!

1. Revamp Your Resolutions

Before you think about how you’re going to stick to your resolutions, you first have to create then revamp them. Rather than think of almost-impossible things to do, you can create viable solutions geared towards your mental health.

Practice gratitude and keep a journal, talking about the things you were thankful and happy for throughout the day. Nourish what and who you have, especially friendship and being with loved ones!

2. Make Your Resolutions Stick

Stick to your resolutions, but make sure that when you’re creating real and long-term lifestyle changes. Don’t go overboard and create resolutions that aren’t viable, as this can cause you to feel pressure and demotivated if you can’t stick to them.

What you can do is to have a game plan and track your progress, celebrating the small wins. Stay consistent with your resolution and be patient, as it takes time to form a habit.

3. Bring Intention into Your Actions

After the holiday break, it might be difficult to check back into reality! To help get you back on track, you should bring intention to your actions by following mindfulness. Mindfulness will help you pay attention to what is happening now, using techniques such as breathing techniques, meditation, yoga, and more.

By becoming more aware of your thoughts and feelings, you can manage them better.

4. Sleep Quality

Another thing you should do is to get more sleep. But it isn’t just about getting more sleep, but quality sleep! This means changing a few habits focused on sleep.

For example, instead of having a sugary snack or alcohol before bedtime, go for light protein snacks instead. Doing so stabilizes your blood sugar levels before sleeping, resulting in waking up less throughout the night.

Furthermore, remove electronics from your nightly routine, as this can be stimulating, keeping you up further. You can read a book or listen to calming sounds to wind you down instead.

Shange the physical characteristics of your bedroom as well, such as keeping the room’s temperature cool, investing in comfortable bedding, and even diffusing essential oils in the room to relax you.

5. Look After Yourself Physically, to Feel Better Mentally

Your physical and mental health are connected. With lifestyle changes to keep you physically healthy, you can reap psychological benefits as well.

What you can do is to begin exercising more and eating healthily.

Exercise can boost happy chemicals in your brain, which are endorphins. This would improve your mood and wellbeing. Even a 10-15 minute walk daily will help you feel physically and mentally better.

Also, start making healthier choices in terms of your diet. Avoid overeating and choose more fruits and vegetables filled with vitamins and nutrients, which positively affect our mental wellbeing. Opt for foods rich in folic acid and omega-3 acids, which improve moods while lowering anxiety and stress.

6. Practice Self-Care

It’s crucial to practice self-care as a way to improve your mental health. There are many ways you can do this, by:

  • Make time for yourself, planning as much time as you can for YOU. Even performing small things that make you happy will do wonders! Have a hot bath, read your favorite book, or just take that break to recharge your mind and body
  • Explore different hobbies and find what makes you happy, from visiting places, meeting new people, and doing new activities
  • Don’t be so hard on yourself! It’s easy to be so critical, but don’t beat yourself up for small things, or looking down at yourself when there is no need to be

7. Consider Taking a Break From Social Media

Social media is extremely beneficial and has helped us with communicating with other people around the world. But as we use it more, it actually has the potential of negatively affecting our mental health. This is because we tend to compare our lives with others from the posts we see, feeling like we aren’t enough from the ‘perfect’ photos and accomplishments people post about.

Don’t put yourself down because of this! Remember that social media doesn’t show everything about people, and it may be best to stay away from it. Log out of Facebook and log into your wellbeing, fighting the addiction of social media and focusing more on your life, along with your loved ones.

Wrapping It Up

If you believe you need more help to improve your mental health, you can visit one of the reputable regional psychologists in your area to receive the treatment you need. For now, keep these tips in mind and continue to work your way towards a better mind, body, and soul.

Good luck! If you have any more tips or want to ask questions related to mental health, share them in the comments section below.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alice Markham

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