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17 Habits To Improve Mental Health

Updated: Jul 9, 2021

1. Limit Caffeine and Alcochol Intake

Caffeine can have a negative impact on your mental health. If you suffer from anxiety, it is possible that caffeine could be making it worse. Experiment with cutting back or even cutting it out altogether and see if you notice any improvement. Alcohol is a depressant. Even though it may make you feel good in the moment, in the long run, it may be doing more harm than good.

2. Break Your Procrastination Habit

Chronic procrastination has been associated with reduced mental health, higher levels of stress, and lower levels of well-being. If there is something that you have been putting off, bite the bullet and get it over with.

3. Practice Gratitude

Having a regular gratitude practice actually rewires your brain and trains it to seek out the positive. If you are short on time, this is the best habit to start. You get a big benefit from just spending 3 minutes noticing the good in your life.

4. Strive For A Better Balanced Life

Balance means different things to different people. What I mean by balance is living in alignment with your values. The more you are in alignment, the happier you will be.

5. Cut Back On Sugar and Refined Carbs

You know too much sugar is bad for your waistline, but it can also wreak havoc on your brain. Not only is it extremely addictive, but it can worsen symptoms of anxiety and depression and impair your memory. Refined or “white” carbs like white bread and white rice. Refined carbs digest as sugar and so have the same effects on your mental health.

6. Cut Out Fried Food

You know fried food isn’t good for your physical health, but it has also been linked to depression.

7. Sleep

Getting adequate sleep is one of the best things you can do for your overall wellbeing. Poor sleep is linked to depression and anxiety as well as impaired decision making.

8. Meditation

Great for reducing stress and symptoms related to anxiety and depression. Meditation has also been shown to help you cope with chronic pain.

9. Set Boundaries

It is so, so important to have self-respect and to set boundaries with others to protect your energy.

10. Hydrate

Even mild dehydration can cause emotional problems, affect your mood, and impair your ability to focus. Staying well hydrated helps you function at your best.

11. Laugh More

Laughter really is the best medicine for mental health. It is impossible to feel anxious, angry or sad when you are laughing.

12. Get Outside

Being outside, especially in green spaces, has been shown to lower stress and improve mood. Anytime I find my stress levels rising, I take my kids outside and notice an almost immediate benefit.

13. Bring Nature Indoors

Another great way to reduce stress is to bring the greenery inside. Especially in the gray, cold days of winter, having houseplants is a great way to reap the benefits of nature indoors.

14. Set Goals

Learning to set and achieve goals helps you live the life you want and pursue your dreams. However, it is important to make sure your goals are realistic so that you do not get stressed out about not reaching them.

15. Celebrate Achievements

No matter how “small” your achievement is, take some time to recognize your accomplishments and celebrate.

16. Plan A Vacation

Having something to look forward to is a great way to boost your mood. If you can’t afford a vacation, you can simply plan a meetup with a friend.

17. Use Positive Affirmations

Reciting positive affirmations increases the amount of feel-good hormones in our brains. Positive thoughts create positive emotions, which can improve our mental and emotional health.

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