6 Surprising Ways To Boost Your Mental Health
Mental health is a critical aspect of your overall well-being, but it's not always easy to shake up your habits and find solutions that make a real difference. It's best to seek out a professional mental health expert when you're dealing with serious and long-lasting symptoms such as low energy, inability to focus, and persistent anxiety. When you're in the maintenance phase, you may feel like you're hitting a wall when it comes to mental well-being. Here are five surprising things you can do to boost your mental health.
1. Focus on Micronutrients and Supplements
Nutrition plays a huge role in mental health, and you may discover that your diet lacks some key micronutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Of course, the ideal solution is to eat a varied diet of vibrant vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, whole grains, and healthy proteins. But there could be a number of reasons why that's not possible for you, including allergies, food preferences, and lack of options or availability.
When it comes down to it, you may need to explore supplements and products that can help you achieve a complete nutrition picture. A solid multivitamin is a good start, but there are also products like DFT by Le-Vel, also referred to as the thrive patch in online communities, which utilize new technologies to deliver nutritional supplementation.
2. Explore the Outdoors
Whether or not you're a lover of nature, exploring the outdoors has an unexpectedly significant impact on mental health. Unfortunately, it's all too easy to get caught up in the daily grind where you spend most of your time staring at a screen or running errands and caring for others. Yet, your brain is hardwired to enjoy nature, including trees, forests, parks, open environments, rivers, streams, lakes, and the ocean.
Recent studies have pointed to the many benefits of spending time outside, specifically in green environments like forests, mountains, and even city parks. Some of the benefits of mental health include:
3. Volunteer for an Important Cause
Even though time is precious, you can see a boost in your mental health by setting aside a portion of your week or month to volunteer for a cause that matters to you. Volunteering can also increase your sense of independence and contentment because it's something you choose for yourself and something you do from a sense of altruism.
If you're not sure where to start when it comes to volunteering your time, try brainstorming things you're good at or things you like to do. For example, if you enjoy spending time with animals, you could volunteer to walk and play with the dogs at an animal rescue. If you love reading and language, you could volunteer to tutor recently resettled refugees or children from underserved educational backgrounds.
4. Start a Gratitude Journal
Although it may seem unlikely, reflecting on what you're grateful for can actually increase your sense of wellbeing, and an easy way to do this is by starting a gratitude journal. You don't have to be an accomplished writer or even enjoy journaling to do this activity. It's very simple and can have a positive impact on your outlook and perspective.
To start a gratitude journal, simply choose a notebook that you like and commit to writing down three things every day that you're grateful for. Keep up this habit for three weeks, then three months, and after that, it will feel as natural as breathing.
5. Spend an Alcohol-Free Night Out on the Town
Whether it's a comedy show or a late-night dance party, fun nighttime activities are a great way to boost your sense of mental wellness. Studies have shown that avoiding alcohol can have a positive effect on your mental wellness and who said mocktails have to be boring!? You can enjoy a night out without booze. Dancing, laughing, and going to karaoke are all great ways of boosting your mood and endorphins.
6.Start Something You’ve Dreamed Of Doing
Always wanted to salsa dance? Run a marathon? Learn how to paint? You won’t become an expert overnight but the act of starting something you’ve held a desire to do for a long time can help boost your mood and potentially introduce you to new circle of friends and acquaintances.
As Martin Luther King, Jr. said: "You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step."
Mental health is a serious subject, and it's something you should strive to be open about with your friends and family. Try these tips to see a significant boost to your mental health.
If you would like to speak with an expert, here are our recommended services:
- Beyond Blue: Individuals feeling anxious, depressed, or overwhlemed can dial 1300 22 4636, or email or chat with Beyond Blue representatives online, 24/7.
- Lifeline: or 13 11 14 24 hour telephone counselling service
- SANE Australia Helpline: or 1800 18 SANE (7236) SANE Australia is a national charity helping all Australians affected by mental illness lead a better life – through campaigning, education and research.
- PANDA or 1300 726 306. National Perinatal Depression Helpline: PANDA’s National Perinatal Depression Helpline, funded by the Australian and Victorian Governments, provides vital support, information, referral and counselling to thousands of Australian parents and their families.
- Black Dog Institute: The Black Dog Institute is a world leader in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mood disorders such as depression and bipolar disorder.
- Mensline Australia or 1300 78 99 78: A dedicated service for men with relationship and family concerns.
- Parentline or 1300 1300 52: Parent Line is a telephone service for parents and carers of children 0-18 in New South Wales.
- Butterfly Foundation or 1800 33 4673. Butterfly provides support for Australians who suffer from eating disorders and negative body image issues and their carers.
- QLife: LGBTQIA+ individuals looking for counselling or referral services can call 1800 184 527 (3pm to midnight daily) or chat with a QLife rep online.
- Suicide Call Back Service: Anybody thinking about suicide should call 1300 659 467.
- ReachOut ReachOut.com is Australia’s leading online youth mental health service. ReachOut.com is an initiative of the Inspire Foundation, an Australian non-profit with a mission to help young people lead happier lives.
- 13YARN: 13 92 76 13YARN is an Aboriginal & Torres Strait Islander crisis support line funded by the Australian Government with the support of Lifeline and developed in collaboration with Gayaa Dhuwi (Proud Spirit) Australia. It is run by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
- Anxiety Recovery Centre Victoria (ARCVic) Helpline: 1300 269 438. Funded by the Victorian Government, offers a range of services for people experiencing anxiety, OCD, depression, and other mental illnesses
- Kids Helpline: Kids Helpline provides mental health support for those 5 to 25 years-old. You can reach them at 1800 55 1800 at any time.
- Head to Health: For a deeper look at digital mental health services in Australia, including a list of phone support services.
This article was kindly submitted by Lewis Robinson.