Following on from Mental Health Awareness Week, we know it can be overwhelming to see lots of advice on social media and the internet. It’s difficult to know where to start if you’re looking to improve your mental wellbeing. We wanted to provide a little insight into how some of our Girls in Charge Team look after their mental health, in case you were looking for some new ways to practise self-care.
1. Spend Time with Animals
Maggie, our Co-Founder, highlighted the importance of spending time with animals, as well as providing us with this adorable picture of her cat, Plato!
The Mental Health Foundation suggests that pets provide companionship, reduce anxiety, and boost your self-confidence. Equally, if you don’t have a pet, lots of city farms up and down the country are available to visit, where you can interact with lots of different animals and feel the benefits on your mental health.
2. Taking a Step Back From To-Do Lists
Georgia, our Social Media Officer, says that endless, lengthy to-do lists became counterproductive and overwhelming for her. Therefore, she is working on living more slowly and intentionally to boost her mental health. To-do lists are beneficial (we’re a huge fan of Notion here at Girls in Charge HQ), but it’s good to self-reflect on how your organisational processes may be hindering you at times. Whilst to-do lists are great if you need a clearer picture on what needs to be done, sometimes the best days are unstructured and with minimal tasks to tick off. This fantastic article from Harvard Business School rates different ways of creating to-do lists, and the ‘do one thing’ method really resonated with us:
‘Keep your to-do list, but use it only as a reference — not something to work off of. Every time you want to tackle a task, write it down on a Post-It and stick it where you can see it. Then, hide your full list and focus. Once you finish your chosen task, cross it off your list, and start again.’
Peter Bergman, “Your To-Do List Is, in Fact, Too Long.”
3. Connecting with Family and Friends
Sachindri, our Head of Social Media, recommends speaking to a friend or family member once a week to tell them about things you may be struggling with, or need a different perspective on. Support networks are key when talking about mental well-being, and we hope that all of you reading this have at least one person you can confide in when you’re feeling overwhelmed. Differing perspectives can help you to feel calmer about a situation that you might be feeling anxious about.
4. Get Outside, in Whatever Way that Suits You
For George, our Head of Internal Communications, she recommends getting outside to nurture your mental wellbeing. Taking a break to change your environment can help you detach from work and de-stress, especially if you work from home regularly. Whatever works for you, do it, whether that’s walking to a coffee shop, walking to meet friends, or even meditating outside. Mind has provided a great list of different ways you can enjoy nature.
5. Intentional Breathing
Georgia, our head of Marketing and PR, told us how important breathing exercises are for her to keep on top of her mental health. Alternate nostril-breathing is a popular exercise, as well as belly breathing. However, box breathing and resonance breathing are also useful exercises to reduce anxiety. This article from Verywell Mind gives you simple instructions to try out them yourself, wherever you are.
Do you have any of your own tips to boost mental wellbeing? Let us know in the comments below!