The 10th of October marks International Mental Health Day and I thought it would be appropriate to chat a bit a bout the taboo subject that is mental health.
I have suffered with my mental health from a very young age.
Whilst it is certainly not something I talk about, I am thinking perhaps it is something I should start doing more of. I specifically want to have more conversations about mental health because I feel many of us are not only suffering in silence, but if we have the correct guidance, we can do more to help ourselves than we think
I also hope that perhaps the more open about it I am, it may prompt others not to just take about it, but to feel more comfortable asking for help.
Mental health is the foundation of health.
As a weight loss coach I give personalised advice to help others reclaim their life, but it all depends on the mental headspace of the client. This is why it is sooo important to get our mental health in order to help us deal with other health issues in our life.
When our mental health is crash hot, everything follows, and I mean everything!
Our relationships get better, especially the most important one of all, with ourselves, our self esteem, confidence, emotional stability, the list goes on.
Here are 3 super simple habits that you can implement into your day, EVERYDAY to boost your mood , lift depression and take control of your mental health
1. Set Goals
Having a purpose is key.
We all need a purpose! It is a human need and when it is not met we can suffer terribly.
2020 has been a dreadful year for lots of reasons, but losing purpose and its effects on our mental health have been overwhelming. As millions of people lose their job, their relationships as we become more distant, the rate of mental health disturbances increases.
Take some time to get to know your purpose. And if your purpose has been lost, such as a job or a role in life, then it is your job to replace it with another purpose. This doesn't have to be complex, but I have no doubt you could find one, you just need to look hard enough.
Each morning grab a notebook and write, in pen, ideally within the magic first 30 minutes of your day your purpose and goals. These could be goals for the day or the next 6 months, but having them insight and being crystal clear on them will set you up for a day that is guided as you intend it to be.
If we have learned anything in 2020, we have learned the importance of communicating with others.
Having a friend is essential. In fact studies show that those who have inspirational and positive friends are more likely to succeed in life themselves.
Make seeing friends and family a priority for your mental health and theirs. Even if it is just a phone call or a video message. Having someone to share your problems can be a huge help. Think of it as you personal "therapist". And vice versa. Helping others can have a huge impact on how you view yourself, giving you the self confidence and self belief you need to go forward in other areas of your life.
It is no accident that your gut is called your second brain. The gut contains over 100 million brain cells to ensure the gut and brain are in constant communication, that is more than any other organ outside of your brain. So it makes sense that when one of these organs is not working optimally, the other organ feels it. It is for this reason that when we are nervous we feel it in our stomach or when we are sick we often feel it in our head.
Whats's more, 90% of our serotonin (the feel good drug that monitors our weight, sleep, appetitive and happiness) is produced by the gut. So if the gut is not working well, your brain doesn't have the chemicals to promote emotional stability.
Being aware of what you eat has an immediate and very direct impact on your brain health via its interaction with your gut.
The best way to nourish your gut (and brain) is to avoid processed foods that are filled with cheap ingredients such as high glucose corn syrup and hydrogenated trans fats. Also stay away from chemicals that are camouflaged as numbers or unpronounceable ingredients.
The best way to take care of your gut and mental health is to eat food that looks and tastes like real food. Eating real food doesn't have to be complex. In fact I refer to it as fast food, much faster than any Maccas meal. Raw veggies, eggs, fish, lean meats, they don't take long to cook and bulk cooking saves time and energy, not to mention decision fatigue.
Fermented foods are also a great way to help boost gut health. Fresh Miso, Salted pickles, Sauerkraut and full fat yogurt and readily available and require little to no prep.
I encourage you to take care of your mental health and give it the priority it needs. When your head is clear and you have a clear map of where you are going, things start to fall into place.
As always if you have any health concern consult with your doctor first.
The best of luck in health