What strange times we are living in. Here at Penarth View, we know that times like these, where everything is uncertain, many people are feeling very stressed and anxious. So we’ve collected some simple but effective tips to keep a calm mind throughout this difficult time.
Be around nature as much as possible
People too often underestimate the importance of being around nature. I know it’s difficult to do so during this time, but the simple activity of going for a walk and looking up at the trees. Or even standing out in the garden or opening the window and taking the time to listen to the birds. You’ll instantly see the positive effect it has on your mental health. And the intake of Vitamin D doesn’t hurt.
Keeping a gratitude journal
This doesn’t have to include the physical task of writing in a journal every day, as I know that task can seem tedious to some people. But just take some time out of your day to think about what you are grateful or even what made you smile today. Whether you’re grateful for the good health of friends and family, or whether you’re happy you finally perfected that Victoria sponge.
Look after yourself
It is very easy to slip into the habit of sitting around all day and eating junk food. And of course we’re all allowed those days! But if you’re feeling stressed, don’t reach for those vices. Instead go and have a nice bubble bath, do a face mask or make a tasty healthy smoothie. If you take care of your physical health, your mental health with soon follow stead.
Create a mindfulness mantra
This is a nice simple trick to keep your mind focused on the positives, while also setting yourself a goal for the rest of the day. Find a mantra that you can say in the morning, before you go to bed and whenever you’re feeling particularly stressed or overwhelmed. Don’t say it over and over again in a panic, take your time to focus on the words and what they mean. Pick a mantra that is personal to you; it could be “today will be a good day” or “I am strong, healthy and happy”. But make sure it’s a positive mantra!
Stay away from negative social media
It’s so easy to reach for the phone and find yourself lost in the endless sea of negativity and panic. So try and limit your time just scrolling through your phone, dipping in and out of different platforms. Instead, try and find positive communities within social media. My favourite at the moment is ‘Isolation Creativity Club’ on Facebook, where people can share their creative projects with others.
Try to Stick to a Routine
Everyone’s lives have been thrown about a bit over the past few weeks. So during this difficult time, try sticking to a routine as best as you can. Just simple things like getting up at the same time every day, making your bed, having a daily workout routine. This can have a big positive effect on your mental health and will help you be more productive. Maybe make a to-do list for the day, or for the week. Make sure to include fun activities as part of your list.
Do Something Creative
Being creative has proven to have great effects on your mental health. It can put your mind in a state of calm, ‘Finding your Flow’, that helps you relax and reduces anxiety. Start a creative project that will keep your mind busy. It can also be a chance to learn or practice a new skill. Why not try knitting, stitching, painting, jewellery making, writing…? The possibilities are endless.
Change your focus
Finding yourself falling into a stressful mindset? Step away. Whether it be physically or mentally (preferably both), move away from the situation and do something completely different. Don’t allow yourself to fall into the habit of overthinking or thinking you have to remain stressed or anxious because the rest of the world is. The quicker you remove yourself from that situation, the better.
Stay connected with friends and family
This can be a very isolated time. Even with a house full of people, you may all feel disconnected from the outside world. Take time out of your day to give your friends and family a call or video chat. But try and keep the conversation positive and upbeat. Although we’re all allowed a good moan about things, don’t forget all the good things around you.
Listen to music
This may seem like an obvious one, but it’s one that’s often overlooked. If you’re feeling stressed, put on some calming music and really listen to it and you’ll find yourself instantly calming down. Alternatively, play some fun, upbeat music that’ll make you smile and have a dance around the room.