Alternative ways to look after your mental health

We are big advocates for the 5 Ways to Wellbeing but recently we’ve been asking our teams for additional practices to see if we can expand our wellbeing toolkit. Here are some of their suggestions.

NB: we are all unique in our interests and circumstances – therefore different approaches and practices will apply and be accessible to each of us. Take a look and see if any of the below would interest you.

Breathwork to help manage stress, panic and anxiety

Mediation is a great tool to reduce stress levels and feel calm and centred. However, some find meditation impossible, especially when they are feeling particularly wired. This is when breathing exercises or breathwork can be useful, to find out more about this practice check out these websites:

NHS
Anxiety Coach
Pause Breathwork 

Listen to Podcasts

Podcasts are great way to learn and be entertained. There are thousands that you can choose from, and you can simply search for a topic that interests you.

Some wellbeing favourites of ours are:

Recovering from Reality
Your Anxiety Toolkit
Unf*ck Your Brain
Deliciously Ella – The Podcast 
Happy Place
Mind Body Green

Become a minimalist

We all know how cathartic a spring clean can be – minimalism as a lifestyle choices takes this even further by focusing on creating more and consuming less in the first place. Some people embrace minimalism as a complete lifestyle and others like to adopt the approach in specific areas of their lives.

Put simply: ‘Minimalists search for happiness not through things, but through life itself; thus, it’s up to you to determine what is necessary and what is superfluous in your life.’

Learn more through The Minimalists website or watch this documentary.

Aromatherapy

Studies suggest that aromatherapy can reduce feelings of stress by decreasing levels of cortisol, also known as the ‘stress’ hormone. Aromatherapy can also be used to increase alertness, focus and energy levels. There are many ways in which aromatherapy can be used; rollerballs used on the body, diffusers to release a scent into the room, candles and more.

If you’re interested in finding out how to weave aromatherapy into your day take a look at this YouTube tutorial.

Reduce screen-time an hour before bed

Sleep and relaxation play a huge role to our overall wellbeing but today’s technology can make it very hard for our bodies and minds to ease into a restorative night’s sleep.

This is partly due to the blue light that is emitted from our phones, TVs and laptops that keep us alert and mess with the body’s internal sleep clock. If you’ve noticed that you manage stress a lot better after a good night’s sleep it might be worth turning all screens off an hour before bed. If that’s not an option, it might be worth researching blue light blocking glasses or changing your device settings to switch the blue lights off.

For more info visit the Sleep Foundation.

Thought-work

Managing the stresses of everyday life with wellbeing tools and practices is a great way to keep afloat, but if you feel like every day is a battle against a tide of stress and worry it might be worth considering speaking to a person that you trust or a qualified professional.

A counsellor, therapist or coach can help you review what is causing stress in your life; your thought patterns and even your lifestyle choices so that you can consciously make changes towards a life that brings meaning, purpose and joy.

Find out more about counselling here. Alternatively, you can research thought or mindset work online, a great place to start is ThinkUp.

For more tips go to our wellbeing pages.

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