When it comes to taking care of your mental health, small changes can make a big difference. We’ve all experienced it – when something as quick and easy as listening to a good song, talking to a friend, or taking a walk gives us an immediate mood boost. Building these small but mighty habits into your daily routine can help you feel healthier and happier over time, leading to better long-term mental health.
Here are five small changes you can make to nurture your mental health every day:
1. Clean your space
Having a clean, cozy place to unwind after a long day can do wonders for your mental health. You don’t have to be a clean freak to keep your space tidy. Consider jotting down a quick cleaning schedule to keep yourself on track. Check out this nifty cleaning guide from Apartment Therapy for easy ways to tidy up and declutter in just 20 minutes per day.
2. Make time for laughter
A good laugh can immediately brighten your mood. It also has plenty of beneficial effects on your body. According to the Mayo Clinic, laughing can induce changes like better circulation, decreased blood pressure, and a healthier immune system. So spending more time with people that make you laugh is a no-brainer for your mental AND physical health.
3. Ditch your devices
Disconnecting from screens – even just for a few hours per day – can improve focus, reduce stress, and help you sleep better. Set aside a little time each day to go device-free, and your mind and body will thank you.
4. Get outside
Studies show that spending time in nature has profoundly positive effects on humans’ physical and psychological wellbeing. Recent research found that contact with nature is linked to increased happiness, better social interactions, and a sense of meaning and purpose in life. To reap these benefits, try and commit to at least a little time outside every day, even if it’s just a walk around your neighborhood.
5. Relax before bed
A healthy nighttime routine is important for good sleep, and good sleep is an absolute must for your mental health. Try to turn off your devices at least half an hour before bedtime. Instead, unwind with a good book, meditation, or light yoga. For more ideas, check out these tips from Sleep Foundation for building a better nighttime routine.
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