Anything from 21 days to 66 days is suggested to be the amount of time it takes to form a habit. Mental Health week is focusing on awareness and mental well-being. Taking care of our mental health for many requires the formation of a new habit and habit forming requires practice. The daily care of mental well-being remains an elusive skill for some.
When learning a new skill it’s helpful to talk to those with experience. Through volunteer work, personal experience, and various other means, I have met many people who have been crippled by mental health issues. The stigma that exists around these issues can be difficult to overcome but the following tips can help those suffering to recover, rebuild and cope on a daily basis.
PLEASE MASTER - a simple acronym initially developed by Dr. Marsha Linehan as part of successful treatment for ERD.
PL - Physical Illness. Taking care of your physical health is extremely important. Winter especially can increase your chances of coming down with a virus. Every morning, take a moment to see how you're feeling and take care of your physical health. Feeling good physically will help your mental wellness.
E - Eat Well. What you put in you get out! It only makes sense that what you put into your body will influence how it performs. Be sure to balance your diet and eat everything in moderation.
A - Avoid mood altering substances such as caffeine and alcohol.
S - Sleep. A bad night sleep will have a massive impact on your mind and body. Poor sleep can affect your mood, perception, and even your weight.
E - Exercise. Just 20 minutes of physical activity can make a difference to your mental and physical health. A stroll at lunch, playing with the kids or even gardening can help if pumping iron in the gym isn't your style.
Dr. Marsha Linehan recommends an additional skill that contributes to our well-being.
M - Mastery. Do one thing every day that makes you feel competent and in control. If you feel like you have achieved something, even a small task, it could help your overall mental health.
A lot of these tips may seem like common sense but the important thing is to bring them into your daily routine. Habit forming is easier said than done so practice, practice, practice.
Have these tips worked for you? Let us know on Twitter or Facebook!