Its Mental Health Awareness Week!

Its mental health awareness week! Below are a few of our favorite things to do when we need a mindful minute. We found our inspiration from the mental health america site- for a full list of other self care ideas check out the original post here!

1- coffee. This is the best tip I’ve heard in a while: Start your morning with a cup of coffee. Who doesn’t love coffee? Coffee consumption has been linked to lower rates of depression, so drink up. If caffeine isn’t your cup of Jo, you can opt for coffee’s non-caffeinated counterparts such as green tea.

2- Lean in to your sweet tooth. Here’s another awesome trick you’re sure to love. Indulge your dark chocolate craving a couple days a week. Dark chocolate helps boost your brain power! The flavonoids, theobromine and caffeine in dark chocolate help support alertness and mental skills. So treat yo’ self.

3- Take a bath. You’ll want to do this one. Not only is the warmth relaxing but by adding some Epsom salt to your tub, you can reduce aches and pains as well as replenish magnesium levels, which can be depleted by stress.

4- Track your gratitude and achievements in a journal. This one is pretty easy y’all. Keep track of those little things in your life that are good. Try including 3 things you were grateful for and 3 that were accomplished each day.

5- Steal away. We all want to get away with our best of friends. So, it’s time to plan a vacation. Go camping with friends, see the beach, hike in the mountains… The act of simply planning a vacation gives you something to look forward to and can boost your overall happiness for up to 8 weeks.

6- Spend some time with a furry friend: Time with animals lowers the stress hormone- cortisol, and boosts oxytocin- which stimulates the feeling of happiness, but everyone knows that. If you don’t have a fluffy four legged one, hang out with a friend who does or volunteer at a shelter because animals need love too.

7- Smile. This one isn’t the easiest but, one of the simplest. Smile. Smiling can help you to lower your heart rate and calm you down. So next time you feel really stressed, force yourself to smile. You’ll be surprised by how much it can help.

8- Meal and outfit prep. Yep, this is what your Sunday should look like. By planning out your outfits and meals for the week, you’ll save a lot of time in the mornings and afternoons as well as create a sense of control for yourself. Start your week off solid.

9- Take a 30 minutes walk in nature. Visit a park, hike in the woods, sit in the grass. Experiencing and being active in nature can help increase energy levels, reduce depression and boost well-being. This tip has tons of possibilities so, get out there and do something that makes you happy, outside!

10- Dance! Dancing around while you do your housework will not only get your chores done, but also can help reduce levels of cortisol (the stress hormone), and increase endorphins (the “feel-good” chemical). Next time the sink is overflowing with sad, dirty dishes, put on something groovy, let loose and dance those dishes clean!

With these 10 simple ideas to help boost productivity, positivity, happiness and relaxation, you are well on your way to taking full advantage of this year’s mental health awareness week! Now, go get your groove on, smile, take a walk outside and enjoy life! Now is the time to take care of your mind!