15 May 2019
Tips for improving your mental health
Most people will experience some difficulties with their mental health during their life, and family history, life experience and biology can all have an impact.
Your mental health can affect the way you behave and interact day to day, so it is important to check in with your emotions and mental wellbeing.
If you are having difficulties, there are ways to improve it:
Ask for help
Remember there is nothing wrong with asking for support. Whether this is professional help through the Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) or your GP, or by talking to family and friends. Bottling up your emotions is never healthy, so although sharing how you feel can be difficult, it can help to improve your mental wellbeing.
The EAP provides free, confidential and unlimited support to University staff members 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. They can be contacted by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or telephone (0800 111 6387).
Take time out
Life can become busy without you even noticing. Try to block out time in your day or week that is just for you. Give yourself time to relax and reflect. Some find it useful to keep a journal to help with reflection. Writing down your feelings can help you to understand them better and creates time for yourself.
Do things that make you happy
It may seem obvious but doing things that you enjoy can improve your mental health overall. This may be a hobby or spending time with people. Surrounding yourself with positive people can also help to boost your own positivity. Make time in your diary to do something you want to do, not have to do.
Having a good night’s sleep can improve both your physical and mental health. If we don’t get enough sleep it can affect our emotions. More information on getting a good night’s sleep can be found here.
Diet and exercise
Taking part in physical activities releases endorphins into your body that can help to put you in a better mood and feel more confident. Whether you put on your running shoes or take part in a yoga class, exercise can be beneficial to your overall mental health.
The Eat Well Guide, published by Public Health England, advises that a varied diet helps to give your body the range of nutrients it needs to stay healthy. More information on the guide and a balanced diet can be found here.
For more information on mental wellbeing, take a look at the Employee Assistance Programme. The website has a range of guides, podcasts and videos available for a number of common life challenges including anxiety and depression. Use the access code ‘lborowell’.