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ENHANCE your mind



The start of a new season can be invigorating. It brings the chance to press the reset button and start anew. While it’s great to focus on nutrition and fitness, don’t overlook your mental health.

When you pay attention to your mental health — and take care of it daily — you can reap all kinds of benefits, from improved relationships and self-esteem to an enhanced sense of inner peace. Read on for some simple ways you can tend to your mental health this spring.

Move your body. Research has long shown that exercise promotes better mental health. Engaging in physical activity can boost your mood, reduce stress, and improve cognitive function. Plus, you benefit from an exercise- induced endorphin rush. Aim to work out at least 30 minutes five days a week to reap the most benefits.

Find ways to learn and be creative. Take an online class in a subject that interests you. Or express your creativity through drawing, photography, or baking. These activities can take your mind off your worries and help you feel calmer.

Get out in nature — or bring nature to you. Being in nature has been linked to numerous benefits, including lowered stress, enhanced mood, and decreased feelings of anxiety. You can enjoy the benefits of visiting a garden or local park by listening to birdsong, placing potted plants in your office or home, or even observing nature from your window.

Lend a helping hand. Doing something nice for others can positively impact your mental health. Even small acts of kindness, like holding the door for someone or letting someone go in front of you at the grocery store, can lead to a boost in your mood.

Look for ways to volunteer. Volunteering gives you a sense of purpose and can help you feel more connected to those around you. Volunteering can also reduce stress, increase happiness, and elevate your self-esteem. Depending on what kind of volunteering interests you, you might also be improving your physical health at the same time. Activities like picking up trash, walking dogs, or stocking shelves at a food pantry keep you active.

Take good care of yourself. Pay attention to how you nourish your body, and drink plenty of water daily. While you may feel tempted to unwind with a glass of wine or other adult beverage, turning to alcohol may make you feel worse in the long run.

As we usher in a season, remember that it matters how you feel on the inside. It’s essential to your whole-body health to incorporate mental-health practices like the ones listed above.

How To Make Time for Self-Care

It might feel impossible to squeeze in some time for yourself, but it can be done. Try these tips:

Set a self-care goal. Make it manageable and meaningful to you. For example, set a goal to spend 15 minutes outside daily or increase your meditation by one minute each week until you can meditate for 15 minutes daily.

Create morning or evening routines. Try meditating for 10 minutes after brushing your teeth in the evening. You could also wake up 15 minutes earlier and journal while drinking your morning coffee. Routines can help you stick to your self-care commitments.

Take advantage of your lunch break. If you work full time, use your lunch break to go for a walk, enjoy lunch with a friend, or sit outside with a book.

Ask for help. Self-care means recognizing that you can’t do everything yourself. Maybe this means hiring a housekeeper or asking a colleague to pitch in with a challenging work project.

Go easy on yourself. You don’t have to invest hours every day in self-care. Every little bit counts, and making small, meaningful changes can transform your mental health.


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