The turn of this decade has seen mental health take center stage. People now understand that mental health is the axis of our well-being. Ignoring it leads to a negative impact on our mind, body, and soul.

As the world wrestles with the pandemic, health care specialists and therapists encourage people to start by making lifestyle changes as a step towards better mental health. 

Here are 10 tips that will give you a mental boost while you self-isolate:

Keep a gratitude and achievements journal 

Include any five things you were grateful for and three things you were successful in accomplishing each day. The activity will help you gain motivation for tomorrow and work towards them with an open mind.

Show some affection to a loved one 

The key to a happy life is healthy relationships. Take time to connect with a loved one over a video call or at an outdoor spot like a park and bond over a good coffee. Trust us, that's the best therapy you'd ever get for free! 

Laugh your heart out

There are different ways in which our emotions get affected. Hanging out with a friend with a good sense of humor, watching a comedy film, or surfing through cat videos available online can lift your spirits within minutes. They say laughter is the best medicine - put it to the test today!

Plan a staycation

With tourism taking a hit during the pandemic, many people put their traveler caps on and explored sites within their cities/countries. You would be surprised what wonders you might find in your backyard or a park nearby.

Practice forgiveness

Practice forgiveness for yourself and your peace of mind. Whether it's someone who cut you off during a conversation or someone who spilled your secrets and did not bother apologizing - let go! 

It's your right to maintain distance from people you feel are not a healthy addition to your life but dispose of the burden from your heart by forgiving them. 

Studies found out that people who forgive have better mental health and report being more satisfied with their lives.

Smile to relieve yourself of stress

Sometimes, it may be hard to pull off a smile when you are angry or annoyed. Smiling can help to lower your heart rate and bring a sense of calm in you.

Do the inhale-exhale exercise

Inhale, hold your breath for 4 seconds and exhale. This exercise helps in releasing stress off your body and mind. 

The best part is you can practice it multiple times during the day, especially when you feel someone is testing your patience to a great extent. 

Enjoy 15 minutes of Vitamin D

Apply sunscreen, go outside and soak up some sunshine. Sunlight synthesizes Vitamin D, which according to experts, is a mood elevator.

Incorporate omega-3 fatty acids into your diet

Omega-3 fatty acids are known for helping with symptoms of depression and schizophrenia. Fish oil supplements are a great option, but including omega-3s such as flax seeds or walnuts in your diet also helps build healthy gut bacteria.

Early morning walks 

One can never go wrong with early morning walks and the health benefits they provide. It could be a stroll through a park to just walking around in your garden.

Research shows that being in nature can increase energy levels, reduce depression and boost well-being.

So what are you waiting for? Get ready to start fresh and practice all these tips to boost your mental health. You will witness a positive change in how you begin your daily tasks and in the way you respond to external triggers.

The author

Rida Ghaffar