As part of our ongoing ethos to help communities to move forward towards well being, we welcome voices from the community sharing and exchanging thoughts and knowledge. We’re happy to host Guest blogger ‘Gentleman James’ who is a Midlands based well being & travel writer, passionate about all things community & progression related. This month we focus on mental health as our community have guided us to do so. He shares with us, some insights on calming one’s mind.
The perceived stigmatisation of mental health is creating a silent generation of sufferers.
This will only ever exacerbate the problem because depression loves isolation as it provides fertile ground for every imaginable thought to fester and grow into what feels like an insurmountable force.
It becomes harder to see the light at the end of the tunnel as we drown in our anxieties and self-hatred. The more this force gains momentum, the more we must seek out ways to soothe the neurosis.
I want to share five natural ways to calm your mind so that you can regain your vitality. All the ideas are therapeutic interventions that have helped me along my journey— this article content is not to be replaced by any professional advice or medical treatment plan.
- Talk Therapy
Allowing emotions and thoughts to surface in a safe and supportive environment can have a profound impact on our mental wellbeing. When the ruminating thoughts are aired out and exposed to another human being, it creates a connection where there was once only separateness. Confide in someone you trust.
Nature is such a welcoming place to be, provided there are no predators around of course. Aeons ago—before the bright lights and the over populous bombast of city living— the greenery and space that we so relish was our home. We should pay homage to this by visiting it once in a while.
Studies have found that “people who took a 90-minute walk in nature reported lower levels of rumination and had reduced neural activity in an area of the brain linked to risk of mental illness such as depression than people who took a comparable walk in the city.” The researchers noted, “These results suggest that accessible natural areas may be vital for mental health in our rapidly urbanising world.”
Often depression exists because emotions and thoughts become stagnant. As opposed to having an off day (which is perfectly normal), we can’t seem to shift the fog that surrounds us for weeks, months or even years. As with all of these interventions it is about calming the noise in our minds—well, the body is the unconscious mind so think of it as a physical metaphor to move through the issues we face, because when we move we boost our serotonin levels (the feel-good hormone). Anything to get your heart rate elevated will suffice—time to boogie.
- Write a list of 10 things to be grateful for
This one is very tough! I remember my mum summoned me to this task when I was going through an especially testing time a few years ago. She commanded me to tell her something I was grateful for on each step as I was walking up to the apartment. I remember looking up to the numerous steps completely dumbfounded by the prospect. But, somehow I reached the 17th step. I didn’t feel any better for it at that moment, but over the years of exercising my gratitude muscle since then, the way I view myself and the world around me has radically changed.
So go ahead write your list, because if you have access to the internet, you probably have so many things to attribute a sense of appreciation.
- Find your Zen with a colouring book
There is no excuse these days not to own a colouring book. Whether you are old or young, male or female, wealthy or poor—the benefits of this simple past time do not discriminate. Adult colouring books are in vogue at the moment, and for a good reason, “colouring is a stress-free activity that relaxes the amygdala — the fear centre of the brain — and allows your mind to get the rest it needs.” Even revolutionary psychologist Carl Jung would prescribe his patients colouring books as an alternative to meditation. You will find these treasure troves of calm awaiting you at any good bookstore.
This is by no means an exhaustive list; there are many other tools to add to our toolkit, I just wanted to share a few things that consistently help me to stay mentally sound—which is an ongoing thing.
If you resonate with this post, head over to www.gentlemanjames.co.uk where I blog regularly about various topics.
Written by James Bennett
From Aspire4U CIC,
The Mindset Lead Organisation
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