Think of your mind as a garden which you want to feed, see flourish and grow.
Our mental health is extremely important, affecting our thoughts, actions, interactions with others and how we feel on a day to day basis.
We need to nurture our minds as if it were that garden with freshly planted seeds in order for it to reach its full potential. If the seeds are not watered, then gnarly weeds will grow in their place. When we neglect our mental health and don’t look after ourselves properly, anxiety builds and can often lead to depression.
Start today, put your focus on yourself and your own needs, and the benefits will be in abundance, just like blossoming buds.
So how can you do that? Read on for some top tips.
Appreciation for Meditation
Meditation is a truly magic practice that has been proven to calm the mind, help make clear decisions and reduce anxiety. Meditation brings our focus back to the body and the power of breathing, so we are able to focus on the present and not regret the past, or worry about the future.
Seldom these days are we able to really be present in any moment without letting our to-do lists, random thoughts or the constant ringing of our smartphones infiltrate our awareness. Meditation does not have to be conducted whilst sat cross legged like wise old Rafiki! You can meditate for just a couple of minutes each day during your morning commute, or squeeze it in just after you wake up in the morning.
Practice being Present
If you have a certain hobby or exercise practice that you enjoy and it makes you feel good, then this in itself could be your meditation. If it is yoga, embrace that and make it part of your weekly routine. If it is walking the dog but without any distractions, or your morning jog which allows you to clear your mind, and focus on being where you are, then this is your meditation.
Find what turns you on and run with it. Having a passion is very important for your self-worth, happiness and mental health. Life is not supposed to be a robotic cycle of waking up, going to the office, coming home and starting the routine all over again the next day. Fill your free time with things that make you feel alive and put a smile on your face.
Talk it out
When we harbour certain thoughts, they can influence us so strongly that we really believe them to be facts, such as ‘I’m not good enough’. Well, this may come as a shock, but our thoughts are not actually facts, and the more you practice meditation you will be able to become aware of your thoughts. Just as clouds pass through the sky, you will be able to let your thoughts glide through your mind, noticing them without fixating on them. It’s so important to voice your thoughts and feelings in order to gain perspective and become aware that your negative core beliefs do not have to create your reality. Seeking help is not a shameful act, it is in fact a very brave and positive step.
You Are What You Eat
Your mind and body are connected, so whatever you’re eating, you are also feeding your mind. Maintaining a balanced diet is key for strengthening our mental health. Sugary foods have a powerful effect on our feelings, and can upset our hormones. When choosing a snack or meal, think ‘food mood’; what is going to fuel your cells and your mind in a beneficial way.
Good luck on your mental health journey – and remember to watch your garden.