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Mental Health and The Art of Self-Care

Three forms of self-care for a healthy and happy mind

Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. With the modern society becoming increasingly digitised and fast paced, it is crucial that we take time to look after ourselves and look for new ways to maintain a healthy mind, amongst a busy lifestyle. There are many forms of self-care, that can be tailored and personalised to help you feel more positive, especially by doing things that you enjoy. This article will suggest a few ways of doing so, but remember, forms of self-care that work for one person, may not work for another. It is important to find what suits you, and your mental health.

Keeping fit

This may sound cliché, however, a healthy body can really contribute towards a healthy mind. There are many ways of keeping fit that doesn't always involve anything high maintenance. Classes such as Yoga or Pilates are brilliant methods of self-care. They are usually slower paced, and allow you time to reflect, whilst exercising. Some classes may even involve meditation which is a great way of calming your thoughts and focussing on the present. Yoga, in particular, focusses a lot on your breathing, which is a key part of mindfulness and caring for your mental health, which makes it such a powerful form of self-care. It has been proven to reduce anxiety and depression.

However, keeping fit as a form of self-care should not just involve paying for fitness classes. There are a plethora of professional fitness videos on YouTube or fitness websites that can carried out in the comfort of your own home, and in your own time! Keeping fit does not have to rely on a schedule, you can do it at your own convenience. It may even appeal more to exercise on your own as sometimes the idea of going to a gym or fitness class can be daunting. Don't let this put you off doing it at home!

Planners and to-do lists

This form of self-care is not for everyone, but it can be great for those who like to be organised and on top of schedules or deadlines. Whatever you do, whether you're at school, university, work, or a full-time parent, you name it, the nature of our busy lives means that it can be stressful trying to balance every aspect of our lives. A common organisation method that can be used to relieve stress symptoms and put the mind at ease is my writing in a weekly schedule and creating to-do lists. The benefit of doing so is to always know what is happening, when and where. It can also help to maintain healthy relationships through reducing the likelihood of letting yourself or others down by for example forgetting an exam, or an occasion like a friend's birthday. These aspects all contribute towards a healthier and happier mind, by feeling organised and on top of your schedule.

Sticking to a healthy sleep schedule

Not only this, but a sustained lack of sleep can also negatively impact your relationships, work and social life. These aspects begin to infringe on the prospect of good mental health when you start to compromise those relationships that are important to you. It is recommended that healthy adults get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep every night. To help with maintaining this, experts suggest:

Sticking to a healthy sleep schedule and taking on board these suggestions should help with getting the right amount of sleep we need for our busy lifestyles. In turn, this will help to strengthen and maintain good mental health.

Why practice self-care?

Overall, the benefits of practicing self-care are:

  • Helps to reduce stress levels

  • Helps to reduce anxiety

  • Increases happiness levels

  • Increases self-esteem

  • Can lead to better relationships


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