Lovely readers , if you’ve read much of my blog or if you follow me on Social Media
Here on Insta if you were wondering )
you will know that I have a love of chips , and cocktails and wine and sitting on my arse and galaxy caramels and junk food and being a hermit who likes to be left alone with a book.
However , I have finally after years of denial and refusal to believe the truth , have to concede that these things are not necessarily conducive to good mental well-being. I know that sucks right ?? I’ve read the guidelines , I’ve read the articles but I rolled my eyes , tutted then believed my way was best. My mental health was in no way impeded by my lifestyle I just had to wait for a mental health wobble to pass and all would be back right with my world. The mental health wobbles did pass , but when they did I wasn’t necessarily happy. I was slightly less crap than I had previously felt but not happy , not motivated ,not joyful . Just not so down.
So here I am (and please don’t mistake my Eureka moment for some kind of New Year New Me nonsense because I hate that stuff) having to concede that these basic concepts of how to deal with anxiety and low mood . Well they actually work. Can’t tell you how much I resent it !! Let’s look at it closer shall we . As always I can only talk about what helps my mental health , everyone is different.
Anxious , low mood me is a bit on the irritable bitchy side I won’t lie . She reads the sleep advice and hits right back with “huh well that’s all well and good but you try sleeping when you can’t breath and your heart feels like it’s about to bounce out of your chest”
Thing is a good night’s sleep really does help. I can deny it no longer. I read how motivational it was to set your alarm an hour early everyday and get up and start the day in a productive manner (I’m so sorry I’ve searched and searched for the source but can’t find it anywhere)I thought I’d give it a whirl as my blog has been sadly neglected of late so I thought I could use my hour for that but I’d have to go to bed much earlier . So I have been. Not everyday , I still sometimes get so wrapped up in a book 1am calls . I’ve made a concerted effort though. It was hard to sleep at first but added to doing a bit of exercise to make me physically tired I also used meditation before bed and my brain I assume got into the habit of the earlier night.
This was the one I least wanted to be true . I’m a bit lazy . The thought of the gym brings me out in hives ,along with the idea of any kind of group fitness setting.
I have run intermittently on and off for years but more out of feeling obliged to exercise rather than enjoying it . Lately though I have been feeling the endorphin hit and finding myself , again , way more productive in a day when I’ve run or swam first thing…… annoying…seems sat on your bum isn’t terribly conducive to good mental health.
Another one that’s a absolute pain. Just leave me be with my chips and my crisp sandwiches could you !! Yeah yeah healthy eating blah blah …how’s that going to make a difference really?? Bloody does though!! I had to make a few changes to my diet for other health reasons not connected to my mental health . It’s definitely contributing though. Less sugar , more fruit (apparently fruit and nut doesn’t count ) less salt ,more veg. It’s all basic stuff right ? Basic stuff I’ve been ignoring for years .
Drink more water
We ALL know this one , and once you get in the habit it’s the easiest thing to change I think. Plus there are some super cute water bottle out there!!
We all know loneliness and isolation are detrimental to mental health , however for someone like me who actively enjoys her own company I was always a bit conflicted by this one . I think the key for me has been balance. I can’t handle lots of people for long periods , I need socialising to be on my terms really and so there are two things here that I think are helping this head of mine and that’s a) saying no to things or events that I dont want to do and b ) realising that as well as loving my own company I also really quite like (carefully selected of course) other people’s company too!!
I don’t know what balance of making these changes have had the uplifting effect on my mental health as I kind of did them all within a short space of time. I suspect it’s probably a combination of them all. I just need to now when the next wobble inevitably turns up make sure that a family size caramel , a duvet in the dark , neglecting my diet and hibernating for a week isn’t necessarily my first port of call . Self care is of course always important and chocolate with a blanket and a book usually helps . My problem though is I’ve an all or nothing nature so a day of wallowing can easily slip into 3 days , a week. Maybe next time ….and I’ll say this fast because it feels wrong coming out my mouth (or fingers) maybe …. I’ll try a run !!!