We have all had times like this. Life is going pretty well; we’re getting things done, enjoying our time, and just feeling happy overall. We have a nice routine and things to look forward to in the near future. For a while, we might not even realize how easily we have it off, and when we do, we’re extremely thankful and hope that it will last as long as it can.
But then, something changes. Just like every chapter of our life, something either eventually or quickly goes uphill or downhill, and there are times when life hits us extremely hard. Whenever this happens in my life, I become numb to normal routine and ways of feeling, and after a very short time, I struggle to remember the happy ways I used to feel.
How do you feel when life has you down?
Hey guys! I hope that you’re all doing well. ❤ I have a new Cultivating A Joyful Life post to share with you on this fine Wednesday 🙂 I began working on this post this past weekend after my mom got out of the hospital (if you want to read about what happened, visit this post). After a very long week, I was finally beginning to feel normal again, able to think more clearly and regain my normal positivity. Upon looking back at how that whole week made me feel, I decided to make two different lists on nourishing mental health. One list is for when life is good, and the other is for those times when we’re not sure if life will ever be ‘normal’ again.
I decided to make two lists instead of one because it is so important that we mentally care for ourselves, regardless of how we’re feeling. In one aspect, it seems more obvious that mental well-being is more important when we’re down, but this is an essential every day of our lives. I haven’t truly acknowledged this until now.
Would you like to come along on this journey with me? Let’s strive for a greater awareness of how we respond to life and care for ourselves, both when we’re happy, and when we’re sad. The first list is one I will turn to when I feel down emotionally, and the other I wish to bear in mind when life is beautiful. (Although, this journey called life is always beautiful, isn’t it? ❤ )
While writing this post, I began wondering if this topic relates to gardens. At first, I didn’t think it did, but then I realized that it does!
Picture this: if a gardener were to become distracted by a big problem in their life (whether in the garden, or outside of it), the plants he cultivates there would be bound to suffer. In the garden of our hearts, these plants represent all of the aspects that make up our lives – including our mental wellness. Without nourishing our minds, we cannot have a sound life. Let’s keep that in mind as we read the ten tips I have written below. ❤ I hope that this may bless you!
Cultivating A Joyful Life |
Nourishing Our Mental Health
When Life Has You Down
1. Remember the positive aspects of your life. This is a big slip-up of mine; I tend to focus so intently on the problem/s (as do most, if not all, people) that it becomes all that I see. There are SO many blessings still present in our lives when we’re going through something stressful. Even when it’s hard to see it, I know that this practice will be really helpful for me in the future.
2. Do simple, fun activities that you love. When I’m mentally overwhelmed, I appreciate spending the free time I have participating in exactly what I listed: very simple and enjoyable activities, things that I enjoy no matter how I’m feeling. This could be watching a video, playing a card game, going for a walk – something that does not take a lot of thought, but is fun nonetheless.
3. Continue to care for your body. It can be easy to let your normal care routine fall to the back of your mind when you’re preoccupied elsewhere, but I assure you, you will feel much, much better after taking a hot shower, eating a healthy breakfast, doing a yoga lesson – whatever you usually do that makes you feel good physically. One of the most important ways to continue feeling mentally well is to take care of your body.
4. Confide in family and friends. There are few things that help me more than talking about how I’m feeling and what’s on my mind with my family. The support system we have between all of us means that no one is left behind; if one of us is dealing with something, then everyone else becomes involved until that person is well again. It’s beautiful what our families and friends do for one another. ❤ It is especially important when we’re going through something; being there for each other is essential. 🙂
5. Focus on maintaining a positive outlook. Boy, I know that when I’m dealing with a rough time in my life, the last thing I do is expect the best. This is most likely why I find it hard to stay happy when dealing with something negative; if I only expect that everything will go wrong (which it never does, by the way), then I can’t even be joyful when things go right! I’m so worried about possible worst-case scenarios that I ruin my outlook. Practice this the next time you’re going through a rough time in your life. Hoping for the best changes everything. ❤
When Life is Good
1. Be mindful of how you feel and what you do when you’re content. I tend to flounder around during difficult seasons of my life because I forget what daily life was like when I was happy. Our minds usually grab the most negative things to dwell on, which means that when we’re down, remembrance of happier days is not within easy reach. When you’re doing well emotionally, I challenge you to take note of your feelings, responses, and actions – it may really help you when a hard time rolls back around!
2. Cultivate the relationships you have with friends and family. This is a good time to do this, because when we’re happy and mentally well, it is much easier to feel and react the same way to those we love. ❤ Go out of your way to show them kindness, spend extra time having a heartfelt conversation – whatever you feel your could do to make their day.
3. Appreciate the blessings in your life. From good health to stability to beautiful weather, it is all too easy to take things we have for granted. It’s crazy to me how our view of life can change in a matter of minutes when something suddenly alters or goes wrong. Something in our lives we didn’t even realize was a blessing is then out of our reach, and it is then that we can appreciate it. Learning to show gratitude for all things is something I desire to practice more often. (:
4. Work toward bettering your weaknesses. This is not a pursuit we can easily pursue when we’re not feeling well. (Except for in select cases, where the problem actually helps us accomplish this!) When I’m happy, this is much easier for me to focus on, such as being more graceful, forgiving, and kind.
5. Accomplish what makes you happy! To maintain this happiness, checking things off your to-do list and filling your days with enjoyable activities is an essential. ❤
I hope that this post has inspired you guys as much as it has inspired me! Nourishing our mental health is something very important to keep in mind (literally, haha) at all times. Some of the things I’ve listed above are things I myself need to work on. I didn’t share these lists because I’ve already mastered the art of mental care, in case you guys were wondering – I’m right there with you on this walk of life! Let’s practice these good habits together. ❤
Let me know in the comments below:
How do YOU care for your mental health?
I pray that you’re having a good week!
thanks to jirah and elline for my signature! xx