Routine and habit are ingrained in the human psyche. Adult personalities take at least 20 years to form, which is true for the behaviors and habits we acquire. Sadly, some of those habits and routines are not always beneficial to us. There aren’t many forces as powerful as your daily routines when it comes to mental health. Your daily routines can significantly impact your mental state, in a good way, and this is how:
Good Morning Routines
As Psychology Today notes, how you start off can affect your performance for the rest of the day. Many people don’t realize that an unhealthy body directly affects your mental state. You can avoid “decision fatigue” by adhering to a regular morning routine.
There are numerous benefits to having a daily morning ritual, including increased energy, productivity, and positivity. A sense of momentum is generated, leading up to the peak period of mental activity.
Normalize Exercising Your Body
Physically active people tend to feel better about themselves. You can boost your self-esteem and reduce your stress and anxiety levels through regular physical activity.
Reducing symptoms and improving quality of life are only two of the ways regular exercise can benefit people who experience mental health challenges. Research on the effects of various intensities of physical activity on people’s moods has yielded numerous results.
Most studies indicate that low-intensity aerobic exercise, performed three to five days a week for ten to twelve weeks, is the most effective way to boost mood and enthusiasm.
Eating Healthy Regularly
A balanced diet contributes to a more positive outlook, fewer mood swings, and better concentration. It can even help alleviate despair and anxiety. Furthermore, research has also linked a gut-beneficial diet with positive brain development, moods, and behaviors.
Eating a healthy diet can help prevent many mental health conditions. It is also essential to avoid food coloring and preservatives that can lead to depression and hyperactivity. Instead, eat real food with few ingredients, such as fresh fruits and vegetables.
Also, get plenty of fiber! Fiber helps the body absorb glucose more slowly, preventing sugar crashes. Fiber-rich foods include fruits, vegetables, and nutrient-rich carbohydrates.
Additionally, eating a healthy diet can improve your memory and concentration and even boost your energy levels. Of course, eating healthy does not mean you have to forgo junk food, but it does mean that you should try to eat a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein.
Make it a Habit to Have a Good Night’s Sleep
Sleep plays a crucial role in the functioning of the brain. Sleeping allows the mind to process memories from the previous day—lack of sleep results in less positive emotional reactions. Chronic sleeplessness raises the risk of developing a mood disorder.
Chronic insomnia is five times more likely to cause depression, anxiety, or panic disorder. There are many benefits of getting a good night’s sleep, including improved memory retention, increased focus, and more creative thought processes.
Getting a good night’s sleep can lead to a feeling of mental wellness, emotional stability, and even better brain function. Although there is no definitive link between sleeping well and the onset of psychological disorders, a good night’s sleep is crucial for mental health. And it’s not just about the health of your brain.
Having Regular Social Interactions with Others
Positive interaction with others has been shown to improve cognition. Regular conversations with friends and family members can help you vent and work through problems. Often, these interactions grow into meaningful friendships.
People with anxiety and depression may need more social interaction than others. But for those who need it most, having regular social interactions is beneficial for mental health.
Studies have shown that people who had regular face-to-face interactions with family and friends had lower rates of depression. This was true for both males and females, regardless of age. The study found that older people who engaged in regular face-to-face social interactions had fewer depressive episodes than those who had only online contacts.
The research is there: you can fend off anxiety and achieve a more relaxed state of mind by developing routines for yourself. Too often, we’re caught up in the day’s events that we don’t take the time to reflect on. But if you live your life with purposeful routines, you’ll feel much less stressed and overwhelmed throughout your days—and that’s a good thing for your mental health.
About the Author: Tracie Johnson is a New Jersey native and an alum of Penn State University. Tracie is passionate about writing, reading, and living a healthy lifestyle. She feels happiest when around a campfire surrounded by friends, family, and her Dachshund named Rufus.
May Is Mental Health Month 2022
“Back to Basics”
May is Mental Health Month, a time to spread public awareness and education about mental health disorders and reflect on the impact of mental illness on individuals and their families.
The theme of this year’s Mental Health Month is “Back to Basics.” The goal this May is to provide foundational knowledge about mental health and mental health conditions and spread information about what people can do if their mental health is a cause for concern.
It is also a time to recognize and commit to changing the racial and economic inequities in our health care system, particularly with respect to mental health.
www.rtor.org and Laurel House are committed to the advancement of racial equity and social justice, and to making mental health services accessible to all.
The opinions and views expressed in any guest blog post do not necessarily reflect those of www.rtor.org or its sponsor, Laurel House, Inc. The author and www.rtor.org have no affiliations with any products or services mentioned in the article or linked to therein. Guest Authors may have affiliations to products mentioned or linked to in their author bios.
Recommended for You
- Nurturing Physical and Mental Well-being in Adolescent Boys - December 4, 2023
- How Stigma Impacts People with Mental Health Issues - December 4, 2023
- Barriers to Recovery: Shame - November 27, 2023