WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY
DO ONE THING FOR YOUR MENTAL HEALTH

On 10th October we celebrate World Mental Health Day, a chance to raise awareness of mental health issues and address the stigma that still surrounds this topic.

This year World Mental Health Day feels more necessary than ever, with so many of us experiencing periods of mental distress due to everything that has been happening.

The official theme for this year’s World Mental Health Day is Mental Health for All, a sentiment we definitely support.

Everyone deserves to enjoy the very best mental health possible for them, and that’s why the efforts of mental health charities such as Rethink and Mind are so important in raising awareness, urging government action, and providing vital support to those struggling with mental health issues.

But it’s also important to remember that there are steps we can take ourselves to improve and care for our mental health on a daily basis. And that’s why we love Mind’s campaign this year: Do One Thing. When our mental health is spiralling downward it is all too easy to forget that even small actions to can make a big difference, so we wanted to share a few simple things that you can do at any time to help boost your mental wellbeing.

Do One Thing - Some Ideas:

EXERCISE

Depending on how you’re feeling you might be up for a full on hike in the woods or just a stroll around your garden. Maybe it’s having a race with your kids, taking the dog for a walk or stretching like your cat. Any kind of movement is good for your mental health so it really doesn’t matter what it is.

DO NOTHING

Many of us are so wrapped up in the ‘busyness’ of life, and making sure that things ‘get done’ that actually just stopping and doing nothing can be the best thing for our mental mental health. It doesn’t have to be long, even just five minutes of guilt-free nothingness can be enough to reset the brain.

MEDITATE

Similar to doing nothing, sometimes taking a minute or two to do a guided meditation, or just listening to your breath can be a powerful energiser and provide some much needed downtime for the brain. There are plenty of apps or online options to help you get started.

READ

We mostly mean books here as they tend to be more absorbing than magazines, newspapers, or social media. Ideally we’d suggest reading something uplifting, especially if you are having a particularly hard time, but that could be a memoir, a novel, or even a kid’s book.  Reading has the power to transport you to a different world, and sometimes that’s just the break our brains need.

CREATE SOMETHING

If you’re a naturally creative person, you may well do this one anyway, but even if you don’t count yourself as ‘creative’ it’s worth giving it a go and seeing how it feels. It could be doodling on a napkin, using a mindful colouring book, writing something, cooking, knitting, sewing, or anything else you fancy (the list really is endless). You don’t need to be the next Picasso, just do something you find fun and don’t worry about what your creation looks like.

VOLUNTEER

Due to the current situation, some people have found themselves with some extra time on their hands. If this is you, why not consider volunteering that time and helping someone else? Volunteering is an excellent way to improve mental health as it not only keeps you busy, but provides a clear purpose, helps you connect with others, and does good for the world at large – all great ways to feel and do good.

SEEK OUT THE GOOD NEWS

We’re surrounded by so much negative news at the moment, that it’s becoming far too easy to believe that there’s nothing good in the world. Unsurprisingly, this is doing little for our mental health. To combat this, make it your mission to seek out the good news stories instead. Learn about all the good that people are doing in the world and remind yourself that there are always things to be thankful for.

PAMPER YOURSELF

Sometimes the best thing for your mental health is a good old pamper session. You could do this at home by taking a luxurious bath, using all those fancy toiletries you got at Christmas, or treating yourself to a delicious meal. Alternatively, get someone else to pamper you – book a massage, have your feet done, or attend your favourite exercise class. You definitely deserve it!

WRITE IT DOWN

If you are being plagued by negative thoughts, why not take control and write them down. Write down everything and anything that is worrying you, because often the simple act of getting it out of your brain can be enough to lessen the worry.

TALK TO SOMEONE

Although we’re interacting very differently in the current situation, it’s still important to connect with others and share your troubles with those who care to prevent isolation and overwhelm. You may choose to open up to a close friend, a family member, or a professional counsellor, but the important thing is to have someone you can turn to when you need to get those worries off your chest. And remember, if you are really struggling, there are services and charities around to help – please don’t suffer in silence.

Those are just some of the ideas we came up with, but the list is definitely not exhaustive.

Everyone will have their own way of managing their mental health, and we’d really love to hear what ‘On Thing’ you are going to do this World Mental Health Day to support your mental wellbeing. Please do get in touch on social media and share your suggestions – your comments might make a world of difference to someone else.

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