Select Page
4 Self-Care Habits to Improve and Support Your Mental Health

4 Self-Care Habits to Improve and Support Your Mental Health

The state of your mental health affects your overall quality of life and how you think, feel, perform, and respond to daily challenges. So it’s important to nurture yourself to prevent developing mental conditions such as depression or anxiety. You can do so with four self-care habits proven to enhance your overall sense of wellness.

1. Get Plenty of Sleep

Adequate sleep means sleeping for 6 to 9 hours daily. Sleep is a much needed self-care habit that is vital for proper body and brain function, immunity, and mental wellness. When you’re well-rested, you’re better able to think clearly, and cope with negative events or feelings. Adequate sleep also protects your mental health against anxiety and depression. You can improve sleep with daily habits such as having a regular set bedtime, avoiding caffeine at least 6 hours before bedtime, sleeping in a dark or dim-lit room, and sleeping on a good mattress with proper comfortable pillows and bedding. You can also practice relaxing one to two hours before bedtime by reading, listening to calming tunes and turning off phones, computers and social media.

2. Increase Physical Activity

Believe it or not, people with increased physically-active lifestyles tend to feel happier and have a more enthusiastic and positive outlook on life. Physical activities that promote good mental health include walking outdoors, jogging, hiking, exercising, and yoga. Regular exercise, increases blood circulation, boosts energy, mental alertness, and lightens mood. It also helps to reduce stress and anxiety, releasing hormones in the body that leave you feeling relaxed or on a natural “high.” You may also sleep better and even notice an increased sense of self-worth. Some days you may feel too exhausted or overwhelmed to move, take the time you need but don’t give up completely.  Once you get past the first 5 to 10 minutes of your workout, you’ll start to feel energetic and able to resume the habit of marching daily toward your goal.

3. Get in Touch with Nature

Frequent or daily outdoor activities are an effortless way to connect with nature. You can start by spending time around your home relaxing outdoors or working in your garden. Planting and caring for plants (both in and outdoor) can be quite therapeutic for the mind, body and soul. Other ways to connect with nature include soaking up the sunshine, taking an easy walk, listening to the birds in the trees, or watching animals and insects.  Finding ways to  connect with mother nature and your environment, will help you feel less stressed.

4. Eat Healthy Foods Daily

Eating healthy foods every day is a natural therapy for your brain, and highly beneficial to the rest of your body’s vital organs. Certain foods, such as whole foods (not processed) and organic fresh fruits and vegetables, contain nutrients that also support mental wellness. Processed foods, including those with excess sugars and caffeine, can adversely affect brain health. Processed foods also contain chemicals that destroy natural gut bacteria and produce inflammation leaving your body feeling bloated and tired. Increased inflammation in the body and brain is linked to anxiety, mood disorders depression and chronic disease. Opt for foods packed with antioxidants, folate, B vitamins, vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and other valuable nutrients that help reduce inflammation, balance brain chemicals, and stabilize mood or even elevate mood.

It may take some time to cultivate habits that enhance mental and physical health. Start by picking one activity and one healthy habit at a time. Do it daily for at least 30 days. It will eventually become second nature, leading to an overall healthy lifestyle.

How to Meditate for Beginners

How to Meditate for Beginners

How do you master the practice of meditation? The primary purpose of meditation is to improve your mental health through mindfulness. You are learning to be aware of your mind and your breathing.

While learning how to meditate is straightforward, many find it strange or even awkward to sit in silence and do nothing. Despite it seeming like a passive activity, meditating really is an active practice and a great way to train and tune the mind. It can even transform your perspective on life, helping you to cultivate new habits. Finding a place that’s quiet and feels calm is vital when meditating. Avoid any distractions that can make your mind wander or prevent your body from relaxing. While a little soft background music isn’t discouraged, we suggest avoiding it if you’re a beginner.

To build  a habitual meditation practice, you’ll need to practice a few times a week if possible. Additionally, set a time limit for every meditation session. For example, if you’re a beginner, start with short periods of 2 to 5 minutes and work your way up with time. Relaxation is a vital aspect of meditation, so always wear comfortable clothes. Inhale deeply and expand your stomach. Then breathe out, slowly drawing your stomach in. If you notice your mind starting to wander, bring it back by focusing on your breathing. Thoughts can arise that distract you. Don’t be too hard on yourself when your mind wanders. It’s a common occurrence. Just come back to centered, bringing your mind’s attention to the stillness and silence around you, the sense of your own heart beating and again, your breaths.

Pay attention to your body! If you are uncomfortable you may want to sit in a different position. Meditation is not just about the moment; it’s about practicing mindfulness every day and being able to calm and center yourself in any environment. The more you meditate, the less likely you are to feel stressed and agitated. Once you become comfortable and confident with your meditation practice, you will see and experience more benefits in your life.

Yoga to Stretch Neck Muscles & Ease Shoulder Stiffness – OneNest Yoga with Lisa

Yoga to Stretch Neck Muscles & Ease Shoulder Stiffness – OneNest Yoga with Lisa

Our resident yogi and wellness expert, Lisa Sorensen serves up an easy to digest 10-minute yoga practice that will help stretch out stiffness in the neck & shoulder area and relieve tension.

“the perfect practice for loosening up the body”

This sequence will relieve stiffness, pain and pressure that are common in the upper body due to stress, lifestyle or other forms of fitness activities. This is a beginner friendly class that I hope you will enjoy! If you sit at a desk all day, or spend a great deal of time on your computer, this is a great class to do on a regular basis to improve tension in the neck and shoulder that can sometimes cause headaches.

Namaste

Connect with Lisa Sorensen

Yoga for Stress Reduction & Ultimate Peace of Mind

Yoga for Stress Reduction & Ultimate Peace of Mind

Our resident yogi and wellness expert, Lisa Sorensen serves up an easy to digest 10-minute yoga practice that will help reduce stress and bring peace of mind.

“go within and you’ll never have to go without

Ultimate peace is within all of us, and when we make tapping into this place of peace a daily habit, we can improve our energetic, physical, and mental health. I hope this short practice will go a long way in bringing you stress relief and PEACE of mind.

Namaste

Connect with Lisa Sorensen

Healthy Habits for the Heart

Healthy Habits for the Heart

More and more studies are showing that a regular yoga practice is good for the heart. Yoga and meditation have a calming effect on the nervous system which helps to lessen the impact of everyday stress on our overall health. These improvements may help prevent heart disease and has been proven to help people with existing cardiovascular conditions.

Scientific research has proven that a consistent yoga practice can contribute to maintaining optimal health and wellness and can also support holistic healing of the mind and body — down to a cellular level!!  Our goal is to give everyone with a desire to practice, access to the tools and information that make yoga so transformative. There is no better time than now to start practicing yoga.

Thank you for being part of the community of One

Namaste