Jess Commons | Deputy Editor | Monday, 18 April 2016

Feeling Low? Psychologists Share Tips On How To Be Mentally Healthy

Feeling Low? Psychologists Share Tips On How To Be Mentally Healthy

The Debrief: Feeling anxious or depressed? Here are a few tips from mental health experts on how to turn things around

Everyone struggles form time to time, whether you're someone that has full blown anxiety or depression or whether you're someone that just has low moments from time to time (hello Monday mornings), mental health and keeping it in check is just as important as working on your physical health.

If you're struggling a bit at the minute then we'd always suggest going to talk to your doctor who can offer advice about medication and therapy (neither of which are scary! Promise!).

Over on Reddit today, psychologists are also offering advice on how they've learned to stay mentally healthy. Here, we share some of the best ones because hey, you never know, you might find something that strikes a chord.

1. This person, who knows the important of self love

'Be kinder to yourself. Set the same expectations for yourself as you do for other people. Too often we judge ourselves harsher than the rest of the world, and it ends up making us anxious and/or depressed because we never feel accomplished.

Pat yourself on the back. If you do something, anything, that is hard for you, give yourself credit for having done it. Doesn't matter if all you did was get out bed. If it was hard, be proud.

Validate yourself. Remind yourself why you are supposed to feel the way you do. Even if your problems don't seem as big as someone else's, they matter to you and you're supposed to feel things. But once you acknowledge you feel something, take care of that feeling. Don't try to shoo the feeling away. It needs to be cared for.

Find someone you can talk to. If there are people who seem genuinely concerned about you as a person, start sharing small details about your feelings and see if they show they are good listeners. If you don't have people you think show concern, ask yourself whether you think you know where to find them. If you don't know where to find them, or don't feel ready to take that step, find a therapist to be this person until you can find more people in your life to fit the bill.'

2. This person, who encourages you to mother yourself

'The best advice I ever got from a psychologist was to take care of myself like I would take care of a child. Don't deprive myself of sleep, make sure I'm eating enough (and of the right things), don't let myself be surrounded by dangerous or negative people, and give myself encouragement every day.'

3. This person, who recommends hobbies

'Invest in yourself. Make time for yourself. Don't allow yourself to get caught up in being mother, sister, daughter, wife, friend, employee, father, brother, son, husband... and forget to just be you sometimes.

Take up a hobby for no other reason than you enjoy it. Take a class that interests you, just for fun. Volunteer. Read a book. Just spend a little time doing something for the joy of it. I promise, you will recharged and ready to handle all of those other roles gracefully when you make yourself a priority.

You have to put your mask on before you can help those around you.'

4. This person who recommends you taking a long hard look at your pals

'Remove toxic people from your life. The type of friends who are "fair weather," who don't listen to you but rather are just waiting for their turn to talk, the ones who always have "drama" but then dismiss your "drama," the ones who don't validate your feelings, but constantly need you to validate theirs.'

 

5. This person, who is all about mindfulness

'Find something that gives you purpose and meaning in life, and always try to be working towards some sort of goal. Try to avoid negative self-talk, and be able to forgive yourself. Practice mindfulness to stay in the present and focus on the here and now. Get enough sleep/ go to bed and wake up around the same time everyday. Maintain social connections. If you feel something is "off" mentally or emotionally do hesitate to seek outside help before things get worse.'

6. This person, who wants you to talk to yourself

'Talk to yourself!

Talking to yourself doesn't mean that you're crazy or maybe a little wacky. It's actually a very healthy way to break up a tedious task or even helpful in making sure what you're doing is right/correct. Sometimes hearing the questions come from ourselves helps trigger that logical side of our minds to go "wait for just a second". Ever been in a dicy situation and said to yourself "what am I doing here?", and suddenly you begin to trigger all those fight or flight thoughts?

Talking to yourself is healthy and encouraged, because sometimes it can help you get through lonely periods. There's that age old joke of "talking to yourself is ok, but answering back isn't".... This isn't true in the slightest. Answering back either confirms the situation or sheds new light on it. I talk to myself all the time, and I question or answer myself as well. Sometimes it's just for goofy stuff like "was X patient being honest with me?" because sometimes our subconscious catches clues that we didn't and usually that's where our answers come from (unless you're dwelling upon it then you'll create all sorts of scenarios).'

Like this? Then you might also be interested in:

How Millennials Became Generation Therapy

Here's What Happens When You're Signed Off Work With Depression In Your 20s

Ask An Adult: Do I Need Therapy?

Follow Jess on Twitter @Jess_Commons

Tags: Mental health