Mental health is as important as physical health, if not more. In times of illness or major changes in your life, you might need to take extra care of your mental health. Change can be a catlyst for anxiety and can lead people to worry about the decisions they are faced with and the consequences they lead to.
Here are our 5 top tips to help you cope with stress as a result of change:
The first step would be to accept the change in your life. Do not fight it. It's all about mindset. Sometimes, we don't acknowledge the changes happening in our lives and it makes it more stressful to deal with them and can lead to longer periods of stress and anxiety. Once we make our peace with it, we can not only put measures in place to deal with the change but also feel less anxious about them.
Sometimes just sharing your feelings can help you feel less stressed. So, just call one of your close friends and talk about your feelings. Talk to someone who you think will understand your situation or be empathetic. Avoid talking to people who may be inclined to mock or disreguard your feelinds as this can result in further negative impact on your mental health. If you are feeling lonely sitting at home, Skype of video call with your friends and family. If you think that talking to a friend is not enough, seek professional help from organisations such as Mind or your GP, in a crisis situation where you require immediate support the Samaritans helpline is 116 123.
Food not only gives us instant energy but also keeps our hormones balanced. It affects our mood and overall metabolism. Therefore, choose healthy options instead of junk food. Avoid caffeinated drinks which may give you a sugar rush but then once the rush is over, you may feel low and depressed. Whereas, if you eat nutrient-dense veggies and fruits, you will see that your mood will not be as effected. You will notice that there will not be sudden fluctuations in your moods or hormone levels and you will see situations with more clarity.
Drinking 8 glasses or 2 liters of water a day can help you feel more stable mentally and physically. Staying hydrated is not only for summertime when you will feel more thirsty due to heat. Drinking enough water during the day can help you bypass cravings for unhealthy alternatives whether it is junk food or alcohol or even drugs. You should avoid drinking alcohol as a means to cope with stress and depression as this could lead to further problems in the long term.
Most of us have a favourite activity or hobby that which makes us happy and brings us a level of inner calm and satisfaction. It could be reading a book, a craft, art, DIY, Gardening, listening to upbeat music, watching a Netflix series or cooking. Find out what is it you enjoy most and do it often. It will keep your spirits high and your stress levels low. It is also a good idea to practice mindfulness - there are some great guided mindfuless videos available for free on YouTube.
If you do not have a particular hobby or need more to occupy your time, maybe its time to learn something new. It could be a new language. Look for beginner lessons on YouTube and brush up your Spanish. Or maybe you are someone who always had an interest in learning a musical instrument, now is the time to do it. If you are into arts and crafts, draw a sketch or learn to paint or teach yourself to Knit. Again, you don’t have to join classes or go out to do it, you can do it from the comfort of your home. Look for beginner classes online or search for distance learning options. You will find many! Learning a new skill will give you a confidence boost and raised self-esteem will have a positive effect on your mental health.