6th March 2019
First off, everyone has mental health. We know there is a stigma attached but there shouldn’t be. Like all kinds of health, it fluctuates. You feel good and you feel bad, this is inherently what makes us human. If you suffer from mental health issues you are not alone. More and more of us are suffering from anxiety. However, the problem arises when this worry gets out of hand and starts to impact not only your life but also that of your children. We don’t want this and so here are five ways to improve your mental health.
Cancel quick fixes
The first, and possibly most important piece of advice is to stop turning to quick fixes to solve the problem. It’s natural you may feel the need to turn to alcohol or drugs as a way to numb your fears and anxieties. Although being drunk or high on any substance might feel good at the time, these are just negative coping mechanisms, which in the long term, will do nothing to help. It takes self-awareness to realize your own escapism, but you’ll do well to make a mental note whenever you’re consumed by it.
Talking is one of the most therapeutic things you can do when you’re not feeling it. Of course, it’s ok not to feel ok all the time. A lot of people revert to isolating themselves when they’re struggling and that’s cool but maybe talking to someone will help too. You’ve got the app, use it. You may even find that you come across someone going through the same thing.
Get more sleep
This will dramatically reduce your stress levels and if whatever reason you can’t sleep due to stress, try to prepare yourself to sleep. You can do this by winding down long before you attempt to sleep. Avoid consuming any form of caffeine five hours prior. The amount of light that can access your room will play a significant role in how easy will be to fall asleep. You may find it useful to purchase a sleep mask. No, these gems are not just for travelling on planes!
Set realistic goals
The world we live in today is quicker than ever. But we think there is a direct correlation between unrealistic completion times for goals we set ourselves and anxiety. When we set unrealistic goals, we end up rushing and the work we produce isn’t our usual standard, this causes frustration and a false sense of entitlement in regard to thinking we should be getting the same results in less time. Take your time and hit your targets.
Seek a doctor’s expertise
Mental health should be taken very seriously. If you are really struggling and have tried these methods, it is advised to see a specialist. Doctors and clinicians will provide you with treatment best suited to your specific challenge, therapy sessions are the most common medical treatments.
Dad, remember you are not a superhero (even if your child thinks you are), your mental health comes first so pay close attention to it.