I don’t really tend to speak a lot about mental health here on my blog. It’s not that I don’t want to or I’m ashamed of it, because I’m really not, there’s nothing to be ashamed about and I happen speak very openly about my struggles. But I think it’s more to do with that I want my blog to be a part of me that is away from all that negative energy. I like to keep my blog a more happy and positive place to be the person I really want to be, not who my anxiety or depression is trying to make me be. My blog is honestly one of the things that keeps me going, particularly on bad days and when my whole world feels like it’s falling apart.
Today I really wanted to share with you some ways of how you can deal with bad mental health days. Even if you don’t suffer with a mental health illness, you might find some of these things useful for when you’re feel a bit stressed out or down. Of course everyone is different, so what might work for someone else might not work for another person, but these are just some general ideas that you might want to try and see how they benefit you.
Speak to someone – Sometimes the last thing you want to do is face the world and communicate with people, even those people you love dearly. But even when you feel the worst, just getting the chance to speak to a loved one or even your therapist is a great way to get everything out of your head and for you to work with someone to see things a little clearer. Of course they’re not going to be able to solve the problem for you, but they will be able to support you by boosting you up, giving you some guidance and tips to help you through whatever it is you’re going through. Even just being reminded of how great life can be and that there are people who genuinely love and care about you can give you that glimmer of hope again.
Read a self help book – I absolutely love reading self help books. Obviously they’re not a cure, but I find them really interesting and always pick up some useful tricks to try for myself. Self book’s have helped me to understand why I feel the way I do and given me a great knowledge of the way the mind and the body works during times of stress. I also love reading other people’s stories on their suffering and how they have got through it, such as Reasons to Stay Alive by Matt Haig. It’s definitely worth a read, again even if you don’t suffer with mental health, it’s a great read to educate yourself on the matter. But if you do suffer, then it’s so comforting to know that you’re not the only one feeling the way you do. Sadly there are others who suffer too.
Get outside – Getting outside is one of the things that I find helps me greatly. The fresh air on your face, the greenery around you, feeling your feet firmly on the ground can really help to keep you grounded and it will make you feel so grateful that you get to experience your time on earth. If you find it hard to get out, then don’t feel as though you have to go far. Even just to the top of the road might be enough for you and that’s ok. Do what works for you.
Take care of yourself – Remember that you’re the most important person right now. You need taking care of. Be your best friend and support you through this tough time. Some good ways to practice self care include running yourself a hot bath or taking a shower, wash your hair, apply a face mask, turn off your phone, switch on your favourite movie or tv series, light a candle, colour, write, draw, listen to your favourite music, have a cup of tea or drink a glass of cold water, read a book, take a nap and reward your hard work.
Write down how you feel – This is similiar in the sense of speaking to someone and letting out your feelings. Writing down how you feel on a piece of paper can help you to make sense of what you’re feeling and figure out how you can work through it. I like to do this when challenging any negative thoughts and I find it does work. Over time, I’m able to react in a more positive way to these negative thoughts and the belief of them gets weaker and weaker.
Don’t forget to breathe! – When we’re stressed, we tend to breathe differently. If you’re an anxiety or panic attack sufferer you might be very familiar with this. Remember to breathe and calm your breathing down can really help. It will minimise any unhelpful body sensations you are experiencing and help you to focus your energy on changing your thoughts to account for more neutral ones.
Do something fun – I understand how difficult it can be to find something that brings you enjoyment when you suffer with mental health illnesses. But trying to find something or doing something that you use to love during this time can help to increase your feel good hormones and in turn boost your mood. It might not be a straight away effect and it might take sometime, but it is about training your brain to associate these things with feeling good and letting it know that you can still do these things no matter how you feel.
Treat yourself – When we’re feeling low, sometimes a little pick me up like treating ourselves can really help. This doesn’t have to mean purchasing something expensive or going on a huge shopping spree (although I’d never turn down a bit of retail therapy!), this could just simply be going out for a coffee and cake with your best friend, buying yourself some flowers or some chocolates, having a pamper session at home to make you feel better about yourself inside and out.
Read success stories – I know in times of need, I always lose hope and call myself ‘the lost cause’ of the world, which I know is absolutely ridiculous. One thing I like to do is to read over people’s success stories online or through books. Again not everyone is the same and what worked for one person might not work for you, but it just really helps to let me see that light at the end of the tunnel again and know that you can be free from your mental illness. It can be achieved.
Watch something funny – Youtube is the number one go to place for when you need a pick me up and to laugh your ass off (not literally, but ya know…). There’s tons of video’s out there that will be sure to make you laugh. We all know that laughing releases that feel good hormone, so the more you do it, the better you’re going to feel.
Accept your feelings – Simply just accept how you feel. I know it might be hard for you to accept it and initially it might make you feel worse, but understanding that whatever struggle you face is so personal to you that it’s ok to feel that way. You have every right to, no matter how hard it is, you can feel whatever you want. Accepting how you feel is a great way to deal with the issue and move forward from it. It will be hard, but so very worth it in the end!
How do you deal with bad mental health days?
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