May is Mental Health Awareness month and before the month is over, I really wanted to take some moments to truly honor that. We often speak about ‘getting outside’, ‘mediating’ and ‘journaling’ as a means to help uplift our mental well-being. While those ways are definitely beneficial, I wanted to offer some more intentional and holistic ways that I believe are not talked about as often.
Check out this list below and let me know if any of these ways resonate with you. If they do, please feel free to save, comment, like and share with a loved one that may benefit from this post.
Before we get started, let’s chat. What is mental health?
There are a various aspects of mental health and different things that can negatively and positively affect it. Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act as we journey through life. Our mental wellbeing also determines how we handle stress, relate to others, comprehend things, communicate and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood and aging.
Intentionally and Holistically Improving Your Mental Wellbeing
One. Aromatherapy is the practice of using essential oils for therapeutic benefit. Aromas affect our emotions, evoke memories, unleash desires, and can help us feel calm, comfortable, and safe. Aromatherapy is a natural way to excite our sense of smell and to improve our psychological well-being. For example, the smell of lavender can be calming to the nerves, and peppermint can stimulate the mind and boost energy levels.
Two. Sound has multiple mental health benefits – regardless of whether we play an instrument, sing, hum or just listen and enjoy uplifting music. Sound healing has the ability to help us manage our emotions and cope with stress. It also has the ability to clear our energy centers while inviting ease and harmony in.
Three. While all yoga poses are beneficial, let’s focus on one — the Reclining Bound Angle Pose. Laying on the ground (or in a sacred space) in this pose allows us to become more connected and grounded. We are able to use our connection to Mother Earth to transmute (change) stagnant energy into the energy of life force, joy and ease. This pose brings harmony to our Root, Sacral and Solar Plexus chakras.
Four. Practicing gratitude is a beneficial everyday practice. Thinking about what we are grateful for, saying it out loud or writing it down in a journal helps us shift through negative feelings and emotions. Practicing gratitude can be as vast or as simple as need be. It can be big things, such as the support you have from loved ones, or little things, such as enjoying a nice meal. Practicing gratitude gives us the ability to recognize that even during stressful moments, we are still able (if we allow ourselves) to feel some positive emotions.
Five. Surrounding ourselves with good, kind and authentic people is extremely beneficial for our mental wellbeing. When we have a strong support system (whether it be given family, chosen family, friends or other loved ones), we are more likely to feel safe, seen, heard, supported, understood and loved.
Six. Taking care of your physical health, is important since your physical and mental health are connected. Some ways to take care of your physical health include being active, getting enough rest and eating well.
Know that none of these tips are a replacement for receiving therapy if need be. One of the bravest, most radical acts of supporting your mental wellbeing is seeking out professional help when and if you need it. These tips are simply additions to seeking help from a licensed professional.
Gentle Reminder – You are worthy of supporting your mental health in all the ways that you may need.