Need some positive vibes? We asked the experts how to recharge and reset.
Unplugging isn’t easy, but it is effective. Researchers at the University of California, Davis found that meditation can help lower levels of cortisone, a stress hormone. Got a few minutes? Try this fast, five-step meditation from Half of Us.
If journaling isn’t your jam, there are countless apps that can track your thoughts and feelings. Recording your emotions can help you identify patterns and triggers that aren’t always obvious. Tune into you with Daylio Journal, an app that allows you to easily track your mood, daily activities, and goals.
A breath of fresh air does a body good. According to Outside I Can, 30-minutes of exposure to nature can help reduce depression by up to 7%. Explore the great outdoors—even if that means a quick walk around the block.
Connecting with friends and family—or even expanding your inner circle—can “reduce stress and improve your mood,” according to an article on CrisisTextLine.org. Stay in touch while maintaining social distance by hopping on a video call or sending a quick text to let others know you are thinking about them. Even extending a simple “thank you” to an essential worker behind the register at the grocery store can put a smile on their (masked) face—and yours.
“As quickly as five minutes into physical activity, individuals can notice an enhancement in their mood,” reports The Jed Foundation, who also notes that regular exercise can reduce symptoms of anxiety, alleviate depression, improve health, and even lead to a better night’s sleep. Need motivation to get moving? Create a killer playlist and sweat on your own schedule.
If you don’t feel comfortable discussing your mental health issues with friends and family, find a community that gets what you’re going through. Sad Girls Club is judgement-free zone that exists online and IRL.
Prioritizing yourself doesn’t make you selfish, lazy, or mean—it simply frees up brain space, energy, and emotion so you can boss up when it counts. Write yourself a note or set a daily reminder so that you don’t forget to use this short-but-important word more often.
Don’t sleep on the power of, well, sleep. According to the National Alliance on Metal Illness (NAMI), “poor sleep has been shown to significantly worsen the symptoms of many mental health issues.” To clock quality Zzzs, The Jed Foundation recommends reserving your bed solely for rest (avoid watching TV, doing homework, or hanging with friends). For more tips and tricks, click here.