By Scott Brook & Sammi Brook
Although the future is uncertain and these times are challenging, there is always something to be grateful for. Expressing gratitude helps increase positive emotions, improve overall happiness, and improve overall health. A great way to start your day is by expressing 3 to 5 things you feel grateful for. You can do this by writing them down in a journal, or listing them in your head, or you can even make a gratitude jar.
Transitioning in 2021 will be different than ever before, but different does not have to mean bad. With change comes adjustments, so it is important to embrace creativity during these times. Approach things with an open mind. Being creative improves overall mood and gives us a healthy outlet to release restless energy and replenishes our emotional battery. Continue the traditions that you can, make accommodations, or start new traditions. These days, we must have fun anywhere and any way we can in the safest way possible.
Maintain General Healthy Living
Since most of us are stuck at home and only walking to our computer to get to work or class, it is more important now then ever to get our bodies moving at least 30 minutes a day. You can do this by going to the gym, taking an online fitness class, following a yoga YouTube video, or simply just taking a walk outside. According to Harvard health, taking a walk out in nature can be extremely healing physically and mentally. Activity offsets our stress hormones and keeps us sane. Studies have shown that spending time outside reduces stress and anxiety, lowers blood pressure, and helps the immune system. Also make sure you are getting enough sleep, staying hydrated, and eating mindfully.
Not only is it important to be physically healthy but also mentally healthy. In these times of isolation, it is important to reach out to loved ones and let them know you are here for them. Reach out to those in your community who may be experiencing loss, loneliness, and grief. We may not be able get together in the same way we used to, but make plans to get together in a safe way or even virtually. In addition to checking in with others, it is equally important to check in with yourself. Acknowledge and express the feelings that are coming up because once you begin to acknowledge them, you can begin to feel better. Ways to check in with yourself are journaling, meditating, and talking with a loved one. If you are looking for a free mental health resource and advocacy group, join the Mental Wellness Networking Alliance. MWNA exists to educate the community about suicide prevention and break the stigma of mental health challenges through advocacy and respectful dialog.
Attend Zoom meetings every first Tuesday of the month at 6 pm to get the opportunity to express your feelings and ideas, the link is https://us02web.zoom.us/j/203118328
For more information visit Getmentalwellness.com.