May 2023 is Mental Health Awareness Month, and we need to realize that taking care of our mental health is as important as taking care of our physical health.
Apart from work pressure, one has to deal with a lot of other pressures, and the minutest of behaviours can have a major impact on one's mental health
being constantly belittled
opinions not being taken into consideration or complaints laughed at
being spoken to in a disrespectful manner all the time
being unnecessarily targeted to prove superiority
Although individually each of these behaviours may seem insignificant, if you face any or all of them on a daily basis for months on end, you'll eventually end up with depression.
Most people go through such stressful situations at some point, either in their personal or professional lives or both, and the most important step to take is to remove yourself from that situation as soon as possible, which may include one of the following:
Leaving a toxic workplace
Leaving a toxic relationship
Keeping distance from unsupportive friends/colleagues/family members
I do understand that it's not always possible -- sometimes you have no option but to bear with the situation, and in such cases, practicing a few tiny habits is essential in order to maintain sanity.
In his book 'The Power Of Now', Eckhart Tolle explains the difference between life and life situations -- our life is what is happening in the present moment (in the Now), whereas our life situations are problems which exist due to the past or the future. All the habits mentioned below, if practiced for just ten minutes a day, can help ease your stress and anxiety to a great extent, by making you feel more present and grounded.
1. Meditating: One of the most powerful ways to tackle stress is through daily meditation. Even five minutes of meditation can have a great impact on one's life.
2. Gratitude Journaling: This helps train the mind to appreciate the smallest blessings one experiences every day. By doing this daily, you learn to appreciate life no matter how terrible your life situation may be.
3. Exercise: Any form of movement can help calm the mind, and cardio is the best form of exercise to decrease stress.
4. Practicing a hobby: Whether it is learning to paint or cook or learning a musical instrument, hobbies can help make one feel calmer and happier.
5. Journaling: When stressed, the number of thoughts whirling around in our heads can make us feel extremely overwhelmed. Journaling can help us channel our thoughts and find solutions to our problems.
6. Sharing your feelings or therapy: Sharing your problems and your feelings with a close friend or colleague who is empathetic enough to understand your situation and provide a helpful solution, can work wonders for easing stress. If possible, visiting a good therapist can be life-changing as well.
If you find it difficult to take out at least an hour each day to practice self-care, then it is wise to rethink your current lifestyle and make changes before mental stress manifests into physical ailments.
You are worthy of living a beautiful, happy life -- do not give anyone the chance to convince you otherwise!
P.S. You can also refer to the steps provided in my previous post, for habit formation and goal achievement.
Thank you for reading! Stay blessed!