Mental self-care is, in my humble opinion, a much neglected area of self-care that many people are lacking engagement in. Mental self-care is about you taking good loving care for your mental health, thoughts, brain etc. It is about doing something which encourages healthy, intellectual and creative stimulation.
Mental health also includes the capacity to move “outside” of yourself, and thereby increase and broaden your mental and emotional perspectives about yourself, others and life in general. That´s the realm that grows, for example, from meditation – the mindfulness state of being grounded in you and in awareness of the present moment. It is a kind of “buffer zone” between being pulled by emotions and thoughts about the past, or into anticipations about the future.
Rather, you are simply present. Conscious in the moment. Observing the flow of your mental and emotional activity; but not being pulled into it. That conscious “now” allows for greater inner calm, clearer judgment, it enables more focus, and creative responses to your everyday life.
Mental Self-Care #0: Meditation
It can be all kinds of meditation and if you are new to it sound therapy and/or guided meditations can be a super way to start that journey. After many years where I have meditated and developed a new meditation technique I still use sound therapy and guided meditations. There are plenty on YouTube and some of them are quite good.
Meditation really is a wonderful technique but if you are not into it there are plenty other things you can do to be more centered in yourself in a harmonious and healthy way that supports your mental self-care.
Below is a simple list of mental self-care ideas for you to increase your mental health, prevent burnouts, establishing healthy relationships and make you more effective:
Mental Self-Care #1: Stop Glorifying Being Super Busy
Being a little busy can be fun and productive but being super busy all the time disconnects you to yourself, others and life. Slow down before your health takes you down with stress and your friends and family give up on you because you were way too busy or ask yourself if you might be running away from something. Maybe that something could be changed if you weren’t too busy.
Mental Self-Care #2: Spend Time in Nature
Studies found that virtually any form of immersion in the natural world, outside of your internal world, heightens your overall well-being and well as more positive engagement with the larger human community. Nature can help you get clear thoughts and be more present.
Mental Self-Care #3: Uplift Your Thoughts
The average person has about 70.000 thoughts a day and up to 98% of them are exactly the same as the day before. If your thoughts constantly are negative towards yourself, others and life it can affect your mental health and life in a negative way. Actually you can think yourself sick.
If you observe your thoughts and acknowledge that you are on the negative thinking path try to incorporate some supportive and healthy thoughts and/or uplifting new words. It can bring you new positive energy and perhaps a new LIFE-generating life.
Mental Self-Care #4: Limit Refined Sugar
The roller coaster of high blood sugar levels followed by a crash may accentuate the symptoms of mood disorders or even worse: depression. Cutting back on added sugar (think: a lot processed foods, cake, sodas, candies, pastries, caramel coffee etc) can help you keeping your blood sugar level stable, which can help balance your mood and energy levels throughout your day and prevent crashes, mood swings etc. which will give you more mental power during your days.
Mental Self-Care #5: ADD MAGANESIUM into Your Diet
Magnesium has shown to help alleviate headaches and fatigue and much more so adding dark leafy greens, pumpkin seeds, almonds, avocados, bananas, dark raw vegan chocolate (but not too much because chocolate can have a negative effect on your brain just like caffeinated drinks) and figs to your diet is a super good idea to boost your mental health and health in general.
Mental Self-Care #6: Limited Your Caffeine Intake
A lot of studies have been done on caffeine and caffeinated drinks. In small moderations some suggest there may be some health benefits others say there isn’t nevertheless studies show that caffeine can be linked to mental unbalance, mood swings and lack of sleep where you don’t come into the deep sleep you need to mental clear. Try to limit the amount of caffeinated drinks to optimize you.
Mental Self-Care #7: Consider Your Alcohol Intake
Most alcohol isn’t good for your mental health. There have been written a lot about the good stuff in for an example red wine. But if you take a closer look at red wine especially conventional red wine there are more heavy metals in it than there is good elements which may cause a lot trouble in your mind due to intoxication. You can easily get the health benefits from eating organic grapes and wild blueberries for an example.
If you still want wine then bio-dynamic red wine is a better choice.
It is not like you can´t enjoy alcohol at all – super good if you don’t – but it is more about the amount, what kind of alcohol and why you need/want it. Know yourself. On the right purpose it can be used as an ancient shamanistic tool to open up but on the modern downward side it can easily do more harm than good – for your overall wellbeing.
A basic thought could be: Know what you do and why you do it and support your bodily (heavy metals) detox afterwards. Please read tip #12.
Mental Self-Care #8: Rethink Your Drug Intake
Most drugs like coke, amphetamine, and pharmacy medicine etc will make you a slave of the drugs (and the drug industry) and they have zero benefits for your mental and overall well being. Drugs can get you down so hard and mess with your brain in ways you never even dreamed of – in a negative way.
Perhaps you feel like a “king” if you for an example take cocaine but darling, please, you only talk about yourself and all your nonsense and paranoia. A very few people can cope with drugs and only if they use them, let´s say a few times a year.
When it comes to medicine, in my opinion 10% of it is useful and lifesaving. The rest is pure business and money. If you are on medication I suggest you do some study on bodily reactions, diets, stress, herbs etc.
Don´t just stop to take your medicine seek for a deeper solution to your health and look for professional help – maybe you don’t need all those uppers and downers but some basic life changes. If you have a non negotiable doctor – try another and get professional support if you feel it makes you stronger.
Mental Self-Care #9: Hydrate
Your thirst sensation doesn’t really appear until you are 1% or 2% dehydrated. But the dehydration is already setting in and starting to impact how your mind and body perform. This means that even a mild dehydration can alter your mood, energy level, and ability to think clearly in a unhealthy way.
Simply drink more clean water throughout your day.
Mental Self-Care #10: Do Something Else Besides Watching TV Before Bed
If you’ve lost track of more nights than you can count while binge-watching a series, only to feel tired and groggy and kind of behind on life the next day, try a little experiment where you don’t watch TV before bed for minimum a week.
Instead you can use that time to read, color, journal, write a reserve bucket list (what have you accomplished so far), take a relaxing bath, puzzle, read, knitting, whatever you feel is uplifting.
For some people, zoning out with a good series can be a therapeutic coping mechanism, which is great, but it can be helpful to find other tools for calming down at the end of the day. And maybe you’ll find one that won’t occasionally keep you up until 2 a.m. so you also get your power sleep.
Mental Self-Care #11: Get some SLEEP
Sleep is as important to your health as breathing. It allows your brain (and body) to repair itself, consolidate your memories and process information while lack of sleep set the stage for negative thinking and sleep problems increase the risk of illness and depression.
Mental Self-Care #12: Detox Your Brain (and Body) for Heavy Metals
You are most likely constantly exposed to heavy metals from food, drinks, pollution, vaccines, makeup, cleaning products, etc. which may lead to accumulation of toxic heavy metals in your body and your brain.
Toxicity can cause headaches, insomnia, mood swings, foggy brain and the list goes on all the way to cancer, Parkinson’s and Alzheimer. Therefore it is a good idea to support your bodily detox system.
A start could be to eliminate toxic food and products etc in your everyday living. Thereafter try to dig more into bodily detox. One way could be to incorporate clean edible organic clay (Amazon.com) or similar to help your body transports the heavy metals out of your body in a safe and (brain) health supportive way.
Semi detoxing without supporting supplements, can cause that the toxic elements may circle around in your body and end up in your fat = your brain and that you do not like because that increases the negative chances of getting Alzheimer etc.
*If you are on medication I strongly advise you to wait with a more specific detox than removing external toxicity (cleaning products, toxic food etc.). Some clays etc can have a major impact on medicine because it simply remove some of the elements in your medicine which mean your medicine won’t work. If you still feel like extra detox always ask your professional health practitioner and/or doctor.
Mental Self-Care #13: Eat more Brain Food
Eating right for mental health is pretty simple. You want to eat more real, whole, natural foods and less processed and junk food. The general rule of thumb is to eat a wide variety of food the way it grows from the ground, on vines, bushes and trees. Fruit, nuts, and vegetables in their original, natural, form.
For meat eaters; meat and poultry should be organic, free-range, and grass-fed whenever possible.
A few simple dietary changes may boost cognitive function and reduce symptoms of depression, anxiety and other mental health disorders.
Here are some of the most nutrient dense, readily available, foods for the best mental health: Organic: chia seeds, thyme, parsley, berries, spinach, broccoli, brazil nuts, garlic, peppermint, walnuts, chamomile, seaweed, rosemary, kale, turmeric, olives, sweet potatoes, flaxseeds, sage, avocados, ginseng, and fremented foods/drinks.
Mental Self-Care #14: Meet People as a “Blank Canvas”
So many thoughts about others and situations can take up a large space in your mental life which can limit your pure thinking (and sensing) because you just have to hold on so hard to biased ideas and perhaps controlling everything and everybody around you.
If you think too much you cannot think and sense clear. In some cases it could be that you trust a friend’s word about a third friend. You believe it and hold on to that idea even though reality is that you can trust that person which you do not see because you hold on to an idea. The opposite is also an opportunity.
Try to meet people as a “blank canvas” where they can paint who they are and not who you think they are. It will give you a lot of space to think and sense what is most real, appropriate and uplifting for you.
With a Non-Judgmental Mind and Lots of Compassion
– Christine ?
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NB: The information is not intended to be a substitute for medical or mental health treatment. Take good care of yourself and seek professional support when needed.
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