Hey my lovelies!
So here we are at the tail end of summer. There have been triumphs and tears, sunshine and sandcastles, and all those oh so nears…(may STILL be channelling my inner Baddiel and Skinner and in denial over the footie result…)
The evenings are getting shorter, the nights are drawing in. Kids are heading back to school and thoughts are already turning to the C word.
In many ways, this is my favourite time of year; cosy evenings in front of the TV, hot chocolate at every opportunity, and an excuse to shave my legs as rarely as I can get away with (an I’m single, so it’s a lot.)
The other side of the coin however, is that encroaching darkness defiantly takes a toll on my mental health. It’s been a bit of a rubbish week in that department, and I know I am far from alone. I wanted to share my top tips for self care when your mood tips from sunny to grey, or when you feel the dreaded black dog hovering overhead…
- Get outside
It may seem the last thing you feel like doing, but getting some fresh air and vitamin D can help to boost your mood, and blow out the cobwebs. Wrap up warm and crunch through the autumn leaves, make the most of the last warm days, let the wind blow through your hair and just take a moment to appreciate Mother Nature.
2. Be selfish
Sometimes the best thing you can do for yourself is put yourself first. Whilst socialising and keeping in contact with your nearest and dearest is hugely important for your mental health, sometimes you need to step away and spend some time with yourself. You don’t have to say YES to absolutely everything: if you need some you time, don’t be afraid to take it. Just make sure you don’t tip too far over the edge and isolate yourself.
3. Find a distraction
When I’m having a bad day, there are a few go-to’s which I can pull out. Yoga is a massive help, and I have talked a lot about the benefits it can have here. I also love to draw (or scribble like a madwoman as the mood takes me), play music or get lost in a good book. Whatever your therapy, it can lift you out of a black mood.
4. Treat yourself like your date.
Consider the words you are using to yourself. Would you let your brother, sister, significant other or best friend talk about themselves like that? Hell no! Treat yourself like you love yourself. Take a long, hot shower or bath, and use all of those products you were saving for a special occasion. Wear an outfit you feel amazing in, or one which is insanely comfortable. Eat your favourite food, drink the good wine, and talk to yourself like you would a loved one. Trust me, it helps.
5. Don’t take things personally
This is easier said than done I know. But one of my favourite manta’s is “It is none of your business what other people think of you.” When you are in a down phase, it is easy to assume that every barbed comment is about you. That person who isn’t texting you back? It MUST be because they hate you, not because they’re working/sleeping/studying. Why did that girl glare at you in the shop? Does she hate you. Stop. Take a breath. Every single person has their own shit going on, and 99% of the time, their bad behaviour isn’t about you. The 1% of the time it is, you call them out because you are too fabulous for that.
And finally, if all else fails, find an animal (preferably one you know, don’t be stealing random puppies from strangers) and give it a big hug. Animals are magic you see.
Hope everyone finds their therapy