This week we thought it would be a good idea to talk about building a mental health tool kit, a concept that’s been bandied around a bit recently but that we think is a really valuable asset to anyone’s handbag, gym bag or man bag. No plasters in here though!
These items (and please, feel free to create your own kit, these are just what we personally like to carry), will look after your emotional health rather than your physical health and should be positioned in your home or at your desk at work, or in your bag, wherever it’s easiest to get to and where you think you might need it the most.
Initially reading this you might be confused – our smartphones are half the problem these days. However, if you haven’t delved into the app store looking for mindfulness aids before then you have so much to learn! Meditation (a scary word for a really simple practice), is made so much easier and accessible by apps like Headspace, Calm and Insight. They provide short (3 mins if you’re feeling super speedy!), guided meditations that talk you through the subtle art of noticing your thoughts, allowing them in, but then coming back to the breath or an idea or mantra. Download one now and have a play, we like Headspace the best. Remember it’s a practice, so the benefits come from regularity.
- Essential Oils
There’s a lot to be learnt when it comes to the beneficial effects of natural essential oils. Whether you need to energise or chill out, inhaling a lungful of delicious scent helps to settle the mind and transport you to somewhere else. For example, sprinkling lavender on your pillow every night can create a mind body connection that encourages your body to relax and unwind. So when you feel tense inhaling some lavender at work or on the go will trigger that connection and promote calmness. Peppermint is energising and citrus up lifting. Make sure you choose a natural brand such as Neal’s Yard or Neom.
- Fix This List
Think about what would make you feel better in a stressed, unhappy or tense situation and write down a few things that would help you at that given time. Get creative with those #selflove rituals – does getting your nails done lift your mood? Heading to your favourite spinning class after work release those all-important endorphins? Or maybe it’s a mantra to see you through – something to inspire confidence and a positive outlook. Write them in a notebook or on your phone and keep to hand.
As we said, this is your personal tool kit, so if these three ideas don’t resonate with you take some time out to think what would. And remember, inhale positivity…exhale negativity!