In recent times, the media and the people have been talking a lot about mental health and how best to look after it. We’re collectively making more of a deal about our mental health and consciously choosing to look after it more than ever before. But, sometimes it’s still a struggle. So, that’s why we’ve devised this list of five ways to keep on top of your mental health.

1. Exercise (if that works for you)


It has been proven so many times that exercise really helps to keep on top of your mental health. Exercise releases chemicals in your brain and body that make you feel good, so, if you can exercise, you should try it.

Even if your exercise is just a walk, or some yoga in the comfort of your own bedroom – it’s worth giving it a go. If you feel comfortable going on a run in the morning, that is also a good idea. Exercise can be used to clear your mind, so use it to your advantage.

2. Cook or bake (if you can)


A lot of people we know do what is called ‘stress baking’. You know they’re stressed when they bring in a batch of fresh cookies or a cake to share with everyone – it’s how they cope.

If you can cook or bake, try using this to calm you down and keep on top of your mental health. Measuring the ingredients and mixing things together is quite a satisfying experience, and having something at the end you can be proud of is also pretty cool too.

3. Create a playlist of your favourite songs and listen to it


Sometimes keeping on top of your mental health is way harder than just listening to your favourite songs, but sometimes it’s just as simple as that.

If you go to bed one night and feel a little down for what seems like no reason at all, try listening to your favourite songs to try and cheer you up. And, even when you’re not sad, taking a moment when you’re happy to listen to your favourite songs also counts as keeping on top of your mental health.

Looking after yourself mentally also means accounting and acknolwedging the moments when you feel great.

4. Keep a diary


Writing, like exercise, has been proven by psychologists to have a great impact on your mental health. Keeping a diary is a good way to keep track of your emotions, which certainly helps to keep on top of your mental health. It is also such a great way of letting out your feelings – once they’re written down, they’re out of your head and you can close the diary and feel at peace.

Keeping a diary doesn’t have to be an everyday occurance, either. Use it when you need it… sort of like an inhaler. Write when you’re struggling, or when you’re really happy.

5. Take 15-30 minutes for yourself each day


Solitude is one of the best ways to keep on top of your mental health, whether or not you enjoy it.

If you’re one of those people who can’t sit by themselves, you need to start doing it. Complete alone time for at least 15 minutes a day will allow you to reflect inwardly, which is hugely important for keeping on top of your mental health. You need time to mull over the events of life, the behaviour of yourself and those around you. Process things. Take time out of your day to do it.

Good luck!

If you feel you’d like to reach out and speak to someone about keeping on top of your mental health, you can talk to the numbers below:

— ChlildLine (under 18s only): 0800 1111

— Samaritans: 116 123