Mindfulness hydrates the rest of your workout. It gives you time to check in with yourself. It allows you to stop, check-in, notice and regulate difficult intrusive thoughts or feelings that can build up without you noticing. Mindfulness allows you to realign with the present moment feeling calmer, more present and aligned.
Find a time each day to focus inwards. Guided meditations, breathing exercises, and mindfulness practices are great. You can also just go quiet for a bit, eliminate external distractions, or use music to help. You might discover anxieties you were not aware of, that’s OK, to be expected, they just let you know what is lurking beneath your defenses.
Speak and CONNECT with others twice a day, can be in person or on the phone. The social media age can make connections difficult as we feel we are up to date with each other without actually exercising any sort of relational muscles. Our phones allow us to communicate with others consistently but a connection with someone who gets you is where the magic is.
Connection and community are vital for your mental health, they are primal human needs that work on your self-esteem and give you a gentle opportunity to strengthen boundaries. Damage done in relationships heals in relationships and connection is where that starts. Once you start this mental health workout you’ll start to feel nurtured, soothed, supported and more whole.
The appreciation section of YOUR MENTAL HEALTH WORKOUT is where you get your full mind-body workout. This workout involves:
3 x Affirmations per day
3 x Gratitudes per day
(increased repetitions where necessary).
Affirmations work by strengthening your self-concept and aligning your self-image with where you need to be. They provide definition around who you are. Those short, punchy, one-liners don’t work for everyone and the affirmations you choose need to be personalized to you and what we are working through. They might look more like affirmative conversations to start with, you can add technique and definition as you develop endurance around this mental health workout.
Gratitude is the other half of the Appreciation section. Having a solid gratitude practice is the mental health equivalent to the post-workout glow…it looks good on everyone. Used consistently, it unlocks vitality and joy in your life.
Repetition is most vital in this section. If it helps you stay committed and accountable you might like to share, post or tell someone about. Tag @yourmentalhealthworkout on Instagram so we can connect and inspire each other.
Movement, different to exercise, is interval training for your mind. As with physical training, we see great results in short amounts of time when rest and recovery are involved.
Moving your body four (or more) times a day connects your mind to your body. In a world where we are often stagnant for long periods, feelings get trapped in our physical body and depression and anxieties can build-up if we don’t give ourselves a chance to move. Change your energy, take eye breaks, energy breaks, walk around the block, anything that gets your body moving without a cardiovascular focus.
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