The wonderful things self-care does for your mental health

Time – you don’t have enough, and yet everybody wants more, especially your boss.

That’s bound to have a negative effect on your well-being, as healthy practices like eating balanced meals, going for a morning run, and spending quality time with your friends fall by the wayside so you can finish a project before the deadline or deal with another cranky client. This will run you ragged in the end if you don’t find a healthy solution.

While people turn to drugs or alcohol when the pressures of work become too much, this only exacerbates the problem. I highly recommend saying “no” and instead, saying “yes” to self-care. This means making time for exercise, balanced meals, a bit of relaxation, and a full night’s sleep, as well as having a serious talk with your boss about overtime. When you follow this path, you’ll see the positive results not only in your physique but your mind.

Here are what these practices can do for you.

Cut Stress to the Quick
This is the root of all the other mental health benefits mentioned below. Almost all of the practices associated with self-care play some part in ridding yourself of that constant feeling of worry that plagues you every day. Eating healthier gives you the energy to tackle the tasks on your “to do” list so you stay ahead of events, while exercising gives you a helpful endorphin rush to keep you in a good mood. Both help you sleep better, which means even more energy to live your life and do the things you love. As you can see, it’s all self-reinforcing.

Free You From Cravings
It’s partly due to that reduction in stress, which drives people to seek escape in drugs, alcohol, food – you name it. Taking a closer look, there’s the even keel that comes from a healthy lifestyle. Eating fruits, vegetables, and slow-release carbs prevents wild swings in your blood sugar and your mood, while mindfulness gives you a healthy dose of calm when you’re feeling frazzled. You become the master of your own emotions and no longer need a chemical crutch.

Boost Your Creativity
With more time on your hands, you’re free to explore hobbies such as music or art, both of which engage the right side of your brain. If you’re wondering why that’s important, this is the center of your creativity, and it’s used not only when writing songs or painting pictures but also when solving problems, which could give you an edge in your career or other aspects of life.

Improve Self-Confidence
With all of these positive changes, you’ll begin to see a new you emerge, and that’s someone you can be proud of. It’s a natural consequence of being a healthier person, according to a writer with Entrepreneur, who adds that you should dress the way you feel, as “clothes make the man.” With this boost in confidence, you’re ready to reach for new goals.

Give You Hope
And this is what it all comes down to: feeling better about the future. You’ve successfully turned anxiety on its head and wake up in the morning looking forward to the day rather than dreading all the problems you’ll run into at work, on the street, and even at home. That’s because you’re engaged in making yourself a stronger and better person rather than getting dragged down by anything that doesn’t go your way. This is how you want to live.

Tempted to make some life changes? You should be, as you have everything to gain and nothing to lose from an honest attempt at looking after yourself for a change. If people wonder why you’re smiling, tell them your secret; they may need a little care themselves.

Written by Brad Krause
brad@selfcaring.info

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