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Out-of-the-Box Tips for Improving Your Mental Health

Out-of-the-Box Tips for Improving Your Mental Health

Guest Post by Brad Krause and Photo Credit: Pexels.com

If you struggle with mental health issues like anxiety or depression, you know how debilitating they can be. Sometimes, mental health problems can get so bad that they interfere with everyday tasks like school or work. In addition to professional techniques like therapy, your daily actions can make a difference. The more methods you have in your toolkit to tackle such mental health challenges, the better off you'll be. This guide provides some innovative approaches you can use to improve your mental wellbeing.

Clean your space

According to Psychology Today, a cluttered space can actually cause anxiety by overwhelming your brain. When you're feeling stressed, take the time to tidy up your home. Simply stashing away excess goods in bins and boxes is a good start. You can then deep clean by dusting, vacuuming, and mopping. Having a fresh space to relax in can help you feel more at ease. Enhance the impact by decorating your space with soothing accessories when you're finished, such as potted plants and scented candles.

Spend more time in nature

Research has shown that people can benefit from spending time in nature. There's even a term for immersing yourself in green spaces: forest bathing. Spend time outdoors every day. You can do gardening at home, for example, or take your dog for a walk. If there's a park in your neighborhood,  take the opportunity to explore it. When you get the chance, make your nature experience more immersive. Camping and hiking are great ways to take a break from the world and dive into natural surroundings.

Focus on how you can help others

Shifting your focus outwards by helping other people can help you get out of your own head and alleviate mental health troubles. Set up your own nonprofit to support your community and pursue your passion for helping others. Formally registering your nonprofit simplifies your bookkeeping and tax filing processes, and makes it easier to apply for grants and public funding. To do this, you'll have to write bylaws detailing how the nonprofit is run, when board meetings are held, how voting works, and more.

Embrace ayurvedic self-care principles

Ayurvedic principles are a great way to guide self-care, ensuring you're feeling your best. Try ayurvedic practices designed to help the mind and body, such as dry brushing, self-massage, and meditation. When you do these practices, make sure to focus exclusively on the act at hand. The point is to bring together your mind and body by focusing your mental energy on physical action, encouraging a more aligned state of being. Nature walks are another popular ayurvedic technique that is shown to create a sense of calm.

Try a creative craft to express yourself

Getting creative is a great way to express your emotions and improve your mental health. There are many types of arts you can pursue, from sketching to painting, knitting, and sculpting. Remember, the point isn't to be great at your hobby. The aim is to do something you enjoy that brings you peace and serenity. Even simply doodling in a sketchbook can be helpful. Keep a travel-sized notebook and a pen or pencil on hand. Whenever you're feeling anxious or sad, you can jot down some notes and doodles, giving you an immediate release.

Express your gratitude every day

One of the best ways to maintain mental health is to count your blessings. Focusing on what you have instead of what you're lacking can build a positive mindset. Positive Psychology describes ways to express gratitude, from journaling to saying positive mantras in the mirror when you get up in the morning. You can also express gratitude to others, for example by writing letters. This can also be a great way to solidify your connections with other people. Social connectivity is likewise important for mental health, killing two birds with one stone.

Create a masterpiece in the kitchen

If crafting isn't your thing, there are other ways to get creative. Cooking is a great example. Taking the time to prepare a lovely meal for yourself is a form of self-care that can help support emotional wellbeing. Make the experience more enjoyable by listening to your favorite music or a podcast as you cook. These simple recipes are a great starting point if you're new in the kitchen. You can also use your skills to show appreciation for others, building on the gratitude tip above. For example, bake cookies and bring them to work.

Hug someone you love

Sometimes improving your mental health is as simple as hugging someone you love. Research suggests that this physical contact can spur serotonin production in the brain. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter that's associated with "feel good" emotions, leaving you calm and confident. If you don't have someone around for hugs, cuddling with a pet is a great alternative and can bring you loads of joy as well.

Take a walk with a friend

When you're feeling depressed or anxious, your energy levels tend to be low. This can make healthy habits like exercise hard to stick to. If you're struggling to get physical activity, try simply going for a walk instead. Strolling with a friend is especially useful, allowing you to get your blood pumping while also making a social connection—both things that are good for mental wellbeing.

Shake it off

If you don't have time for a walk, here's another trick to boost your mental health. Put on your favorite song and dance energetically for two to three minutes. This burst of activity can help alleviate stress and produce those important neurotransmitters that make you feel good. A quick dance party doesn't take up much time. Bonus points if you sing at the top of your lungs to let out any pent-up frustration.

Good mental health is something everyone strives for. Everybody wants to be happy! However, it isn't a given. Often, you have to put in some effort to achieve a happy mindset. The above tips offer some innovative ways to boost your emotional wellbeing. For more content like this, visit the Ayurveda Living blog. 

Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health programs.