World Mental Health Day: Simple steps for coping when you’re struggling with your mental health
Did you know that one in every five people will experience a mental illness at some point in their lives? Moreover, one in every young adult has experienced a major depressive episode at least once.
Focusing on improving your mental health can increase your productivity, enhance your self-image, and betters your relationships.
We believe this quote by Talkspace Therapist Bisma Anwar summarises what we believe here at bia when it comes to mental health:
“Our mental health is something that impacts our eating and sleeping habits and has a lot to do with our physical health as well. It is important to address our mental health needs, or oftentimes we will feel the impact of it in other areas of our health as well.”
We’re big believers that there’s nothing more important than our mental health. Why? Without it, we wouldn’t be of much use to anyone. Prioritising your mental health is essential if you want to be well, both physically and psychologically.
However, we know all too well just how far-reaching the effects of hair loss are on our mental health. Losing your hair – your crowning glory – is mentally and emotionally brutal. The impact it has on our mental health can be so severe that it may even be difficult to get out of bed in the morning.
Sometimes, our mental health can get so bad that we experience depression, anxiety, and even fatigue. But there is hope! There are some really practical things you can do to improve your mental health this World Mental Health Day.
Get into a routine
Routine may sound super mundane, but having a set routine that is easy to follow each day will make you feel secure and more in control – two things that are vital when you are struggling mentally.
Your routine doesn’t have to be complicated or intense, and it doesn’t have to include things you don’t like doing (if a daily run isn’t for you, we get it). But having a routine is the best way to make sure you get everything done each day without getting overwhelmed or having a reason to beat up on yourself.
Start small by simply setting up a morning routine for yourself. What would make it easier to get through your mornings, even if you’re feeling depressed, anxious, or exhausted?
Some things to consider including in your morning routine may be:
- Having a delicious cup of tea or coffee – try to make this really special by using your favourite mug and enjoying it in a comfy spot. This will motivate you to get out of bed.
- Light exercise or some stretching.
- Eating a nutritious breakfast.
- Showering and self-care.
- Journaling or meditating.
- Packing a healthy lunch and snacks for the day.
The more you practice your routine, the easier it will be to do each day. You should also start feeling more accomplished as you tick off each task on your list.
Did you know that aromatherapy has been proven to have health benefits? When it comes to relieving symptoms of anxiety and depression and improving your quality of life, aromatherapy can work wonders.
You can incorporate aromatherapy into your day by:
- Placing a few drops of essential oil in an oil burner.
- Adding some essential oil to your diffuser or humidifier.
- Creating a roller that allows you to rub essential oils into your pulse points.
- Spraying your linen and pyjamas with a scented spray.
Some of the best essential oils or fragrances for depression, anxiety, and stress are:
Tidy up and organise your living space
You may think we’re totally daft suggesting that you start cleaning when you’re so depressed and anxious that you can barely function. But hear us out on this one…
Other than having a clean home to enjoy, there are mental health benefits behind cleaning.
The physical act of cleaning and the end result of a clean home can help to reduce stress, depression, and anxiety. It can also reduce fatigue and improve your concentration.
Having clean sheets and making your bed, for example, are associated with having a better night’s rest. More rest means better overall mental and physical well-being.
We’re not saying you have to deep clean your entire home from top to bottom when you’re feeling down in the dumps. But something as simple as picking up clothes from the floor and tossing them in your laundry basket can make you feel like you’ve achieved something – like you’re in control – and give you a tidier space to enjoy.
Much like when you set up your daily routine, start small when it comes to cleaning. Even if the only task you can manage is to unpack the dishwasher, that’s already an accomplishment.
Some simple organising and cleaning tasks that you can tackle one at a time when you’re struggling with your mental health include:
- Sorting through your mail.
- Wiping your kitchen counter.
- Sorting through your toiletries and beauty products and throwing out expired ones.
- Giving the kitchen a quick sweep.
- Organising your side tables.
- Hoovering the living room.
- Cleaning out your closet and donating unwanted clothes to charity.
- Wiping down the windowsills.
Final thoughts on mental health
The most important thing that you need to know is that it’s okay not to be okay. It’s okay to not feel like yourself and to feel like you’re not coping. As much as possible, try being gentle with yourself and know that things will get better.
We hope that these mental health tips will help you cope when you’re struggling. Know that your bia tribe is here for you. Keep an eye on our blog for more mental health advice, and follow us on Instagram to join the bia community.
Haircare for the soul, charged with positivity.