Keeping your mental health in check is important for so many reasons. You may think that everything is going well, but then out of nowhere, you get overwhelmed and things feel chaotic.
And let’s be honest, living in a city is exciting, but it can be a sensory overload. Sometimes, you need to give those senses a break so they can recharge. No matter where you are in life (student or workforce), we have some easy tips on how to keep your mental health in check.
For Your Mind
As we mentioned above, living in New York City can be overwhelming at times. Everything is always moving and there’s always something to do.
Meditation is a great way to decompress after a long day of classes or work. It’s also a great way to start your morning and set the tone for the day!
Mediation does not have to be lengthy. Whatever time you have will suffice (even if just five minutes). The purpose is to turn off the outside world and your mind. Easier said than done, we know! A quiet space with your phone turned off is preferable to eliminate distractions. (Webster tip: our rooftop is a great place to meditate!) Focus on your breathing and your set your intention. This article from The New York Times goes into a bit more detail as well.
There are also many guided meditations that lead you through. Following a guided meditation is great because they do all the work for you. You just need to show up, start, and listen. The Calm app is a popular one as well as Insight Timer and Simple Habit.
Many of us are guilty of not knowing when (or how) to say ‘no’ to things. This can be related to work assignments, taking on too many roles at school, or even in social situations.
Setting boundaries is very important in keeping your mental health in check. When you become self-aware and can identify when something is going to be overwhelming down the road, it’s important to politely decline. In fact, here are 6 ways to politely say no.
Think of it this way, not only are you setting yourself up for a stress overload, but you’re also doing the other person disservice by taking on more than you can handle. It’s all about perspective.
For Your Body
You may wonder why we have a section dedicated to your body in a post about mental health. Exercise plays an important role in keeping your mental health in check. In a study from IHRSA, they found that 89% of their subjects showed a significant and positive correlation between physical activity and mental health.
Here’s how you can get exercise to work for you:
- Develop a routine. When you make something a habit, it’s easier to stick to it. If you prefer taking workout classes, schedule them in advance so you won’t back out.
- Find an exercise buddy. You can have a friend who works out with you in person or check in with each other for accountability. Workout buddies keep the time moving quickly since you can socialize while you’re exercising. And you’re more likely to get that exercise in if someone is checking in with you.
- Get outside as much as you can. Go for a walk, jog, or run. Having the sun on your face and breathing in the fresh air really does help!
Staying active helps to keep your body healthy but it can also fight depression, anxiety, and stress. It’s important for your body, inside and out.
In addition to exercise, feeding your body proper nutrition is also important. You’ve heard that phrase, ‘You are what you eat,’ right? Well, nutritious and well-balanced meals also keep you in a good headspace. You want to eat the right amount of protein, carbs, and healthy fats. Adding in leafy greens and fruits as well. Fortunately, for guests at The Webster Apartments, our dining room offers two free, nutritious meals a day. But even if you’re out, it’s important not to reach for sugary foods that provide zero nutritious value. You’ll only feel worse when that sugar crash dissipates.
Care For Yourself
Finally, never be afraid to ask for help. If you feel it would be helpful, speaking with a mental health professional is never a bad thing. They are trained to listen to your individual needs and provide you with the best tools for your mental health.
In the end, your mental health is something that should be nurtured. Self-care is important when learning how to cope with any stressors you face on a daily basis. Making time for yourself is important and a key factor in how to keep your mental health in check.
Keeping your mental health in check leads to healthier relationships, better productivity, and a great quality of life.