We live in a digital world, and from time to time, I think our bodies become hyper-aware of the unnatural way we live. Sat behind a computer screen, typing all day or tapping on our smartphones. Do you ever get a random headache that you feel could have only come from looking at that harsh screen light all day long? Or have you ever felt stressed when sitting behind a device? It's time to take a break, even if it's just a tiny one.
Mindfulness is taking time to relax in a day and not worry about trivial things. This might be a five-minute meditation, a quick dance around the room, or just spending some quality time with your thoughts. It is essential to incorporate mindfulness in your daily routine because it can directly influence your outlook on life and mental health. It becomes even more critical when you think about how poor mental health could affect us physically. It's time we all make some changes.
We have different screens in front of us all day, but these differences mean nothing. It's still a screen and still has the same effect on the brain. In the morning it's our phone then maybe the tv then a computer or laptop then a phone again and then perhaps a TV. It repeats and repeats every day. You know? Remember to give yourself breaks between screen time to allow your brain to think independently, not influenced by what you see from a show or social media. The less time you spend on social media, the more time you will start to appreciate the beauty of the things you have around you. Instead of being jealous or sad about what you don't have or where you haven't been on holiday, you will fall back in love with your life.
Meditation and yoga are great de-stressors. While practising them, you can just clear your mind of your day's worries or make yourself feel more aligned with your goals by reflecting. When you're reflecting quietly just with yourself, not focusing on anything but you and your body, it makes rationalising things uncomplicated. There are no distractions, so it is easier to find out or see what you need. Sometimes what I like to do when I am practising mindfulness is make a short list of the things I am worried about. I then work through that list and think of ways to remove those worries. If it is to do with work, for example, but out of my control, I simply stop worrying about it and try not to bring my work back home with me. This method is good for me as it allows me a short mediation period to just make myself feel on top of things rather than drowning in them.
This method won't work for everyone, but you might find that simply taking a few minutes to deeply breathe or stretch out the body with yoga does the trick instead. Everyone is different, so the way we unwind will be too. Experiment with various forms of mindfulness to see which you thrive on the most.
This is really just to immerse yourself in your passions. You rarely feel stressed doing something you absolutely adore, especially when you're doing that particular thing just for you. This might be colour therapy, cooking, or playing with your dog. The list could go on forever because every person enjoys different things. I think it's so important to keep a bit of time reserved for your passions each day because as soon as you put these on hold for other aspects of your life, you're going to start feeling less like yourself. You will feel tired and get lazier because fewer things will make you excited every day. It might feel like you've permanently lost a part of yourself, but you haven't. You just need to find that part again.
Working towards something but setting it as a challenge is an excellent way to incentivise yourself to do something you are hoping to do. This drive and passion for completing the task are great for your mentality. You might stop feeling defeated all the time or tired because you are achieving something you've always wanted to. This is something else that could really range. For instance, you might want to learn a new language, swim a certain amount of lengths or want better flexibility so you can do the splits. Whatever You want to achieve, putting the effort in each week to reach that goal will positively impact you.
It definitely is a tendency for humans to prioritise the wrong things sometimes; for instance, it can feel like deadlines are more important than our well-being. Try and rewrite those rules for yourself. Make sure you start incorporating some goals into your life; I promise you will feel much better for it.
Surround yourself with people who have a positive influence on you rather than a constant bad one. It is often the case that we will put others' needs before our own; if a friend is down a lot, you might want to try and cheer them up all the time. Eventually, this will wear you down, and you need to realise that to protect yourself and your energy. If a friendship is not mutually beneficial in this way, it is no longer a friendship. You have to assume the role of a dependent.
You need people in your life who you care for and who care for you just as much. If they are not adding to your life, they are most likely subtracting from it, which doesn't bode well for your new and improved mindset. Of course, work colleagues are different; you may as well be civil. Still, you don't have to go out of your way to please them, or anyone for that matter, if you don't want to; you have to look out for yourself, so don't be afraid to say no to plans if you don't want to go.
Whether that be a friend, partner or family member, a positive person in your life will do wonders for your mental health. It's important to feel you have someone who matters to share the minor trivialities of life just as much as those big decisions on your mind.
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