Blog | 5 Tips to help maintain good mental health
The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year. The overall objective of World Mental Health Day is to raise awareness of mental health issues around the world and to mobilize efforts in support of mental health.
Bristol Rovers Community Trust have identified five tips from the Mental Health Foundation that you can utilize in your daily routine that may help maintain your positive mental health and wellbeing.
What we eat doesn’t just affect our physical health: it can also affect our mental health and wellbeing. Eating well – which means having a balanced diet full of vegetables and nutrients – can improve your sense of wellbeing and your mood.
Our diet can affect our brain. Some foods can help us feel better. A Mediterranean-style diet (one with lots of vegetables, seafood, fresh herbs, garlic, olive oil, cereal and grains) supplemented with fish oil can reduce the symptoms of depression. Research has also shown that our gut can reflect how we're feeling: if we're stressed, it can speed up or slow down. Healthy food for our gut includes fruit, vegetables, beans and probiotics.
Talking About Your Feelings
Talking about your feelings can help you stay in good mental health and deal with times when you feel troubled. Talking about your feelings isn’t a sign of weakness. It’s part of taking charge of your wellbeing and doing what you can to stay healthy.
Talking can be a way to cope with a problem you’ve been carrying around in your head for a while. Just being listened to can help you feel supported and less alone. And it works both ways. If you open up, it might encourage others to do the same. It’s not always easy to describe how you’re feeling. If you can’t think of one word, use lots. What does it feel like inside your head? What does it make you feel like doing? If it feels awkward at first, give it time. Make talking about your feelings something that you do.
How are you out of 10? Check out how the Bristol Rovers Talk Club works!
Take a Break
A change of scene or a change of pace is good for your mental health. It could be a five-minute pause from cleaning your kitchen, a half-hour lunch break at work or a weekend exploring somewhere new.
A few minutes can be enough to de-stress you. Give yourself some ‘me time. Taking a break may mean being very active. It may mean not doing very much at all. Take a deep breath… and relax. Try yoga or meditation, or just putting your feet up. Listen to your body. If you’re really tired, give yourself time to sleep. Without good sleep, our mental health suffers and our concentration goes downhill. Sometimes the world can wait.
Caring for Others
Caring for others is often an important part of keeping up relationships with people close to you. It can even bring you closer together.
Why not share your skills more widely by volunteering for a local charity? Helping out can make us feel needed and valued and that boosts our self-esteem. It also helps us see the world from another angle. That can help to put our own problems in perspective.
If this interests you, then you can find out how you can volunteer for Bristol Rovers Community Trust by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Last year we spoke to our Match Secretary and Mental Health First-Aider, Debbie Philips about her passion for positive mental health
Ask for Help
None of us are superhuman. We all sometimes get tired or overwhelmed by how we feel or when things go wrong. If things are getting too much for you and you feel you can’t cope, ask for help. Your family or friends may be able to offer practical help or a listening ear. Local services are there to help you.
For example, you could:
· Join a support group to help you make changes to your life
· Find a counsellor to help you deal with your feelings or make a fresh start
· Call the council about noise nuisance
· Visit a Citizens Advice Bureau if you want advice on debt.
Your GP may be able to refer you to a counsellor. You should consider getting help from your GP if difficult feelings are:
· Stopping you getting on with life
· Having a big impact on the people you live or work with
· Affecting your mood over several weeks.
Over a third of visits to GPs are about mental health. Your GP may suggest ways you or your family can help you. Or they may refer you to a specialist or another part of the health service.