17 Mental Self Care Ideas to Keep You Young, Happy & Mentally Fit
INSIDE: Self care doesn’t have to cost you a fortune — all it involves is you taking time out of your day, week, or even month to focus on yourself. Practice mental self care at home for only 5 minutes and find out for yourself how rewarding it is.
In today’s society, the world moves fast and is constantly changing. Many of us have lifestyles that are go, go, go. Working hard to keep up with bills and social appearances can be extremely stressful and mentally draining.
Spending some much needed R&R or ‘me time’ is necessary for our bodies; both physically and emotionally. Working too much and/or going out too often can leave us feeling burned out and unfulfilled.
Take care of yourself wherever and whenever with mental self care. It can be a few minutes here and there to just let you relax and unwind.
There are so many ways you can treat yourself for free. Let’s take a look into some self care tips that you can implement into your routine today!
Why Mental Health Self Care Tips Are Essential
Think about being on an airplane and the flight attendant tells you that in case of emergency, you must put your oxygen mask on first before assisting others. Well, think of self-care as your oxygen mask.
Sometimes you need to focus on yourself and less on others. There are many different types of self care, but they all tie back and connect deeply with mental self care.
Emotional Self Care
Emotional and mental self care are very similar and closely related. Being emotionally unstable can vary from person to person but it affects everyone just the same.
Being reactive, impatient, and restless are all signs that we need to focus on our emotional health. Emotional self care looks like relaxation or doing things that bring about good feelings and positivity into your ways of thinking.
Physical Self Care
Taking care of yourself physically is just as important as emotional self care. Eating a proper diet, getting enough exercise, and enough sleep are what keeps your body, mind, and spirit in check.
Physical self care has a huge impact on mental health. Exercise releases endorphins, which are literally called “the feel good hormone.” Not only is physical activity good for your body and mental health, it's also a great way to raise your self esteem.
Mental Self Care
Mental self care is keeping your mind productive and imaginative, but in a way that makes you feel good physically and emotionally. Learning to sit still and just be present can teach you all sorts of new things about yourself.
Prioritizing mental health will ease anxiety and depression and help make your life more fulfilling. Mental health plays a key role in our daily lives. Taking a few moments every day to reflect, decompress, and just be still can help you feel more at peace.
17 Mental Self Care Ideas You Should Try
There are endless mental health self care tips you can try, but really if something is good for you, your body, and your brain, it can be incorporated into your self care routine.
Don’t be scared to try something new either. Overcoming fear and challenging ourselves is a huge factor in self care.
Journaling or brain dumping is an efficient way to process feelings and emotions, and it can even help you get to the root of some traumas.
Writing in your journal is essentially like venting to your therapist but for free. It will help you clean up mental clutter and clear up some space for new mental energies.
Mental stimulation plays a big part in mental self care. Focusing on something outside of yourself by reading will help you forget your worries and let your imagination run loose.
Not only is reading good for relaxation, it enhances skills like focus, concentration, and memory. It is an efficient way to keep your brain active, strong, and sharp.
Movies That Open Your Mind
Another self care tip that can get you thinking in a different way is by watching something captivating.
A good documentary can educate and stimulate you. Maybe even provoke changes into your lifestyle, like becoming a vegetarian.
There are many films full of mystery and plot twists, surprising you with a crazy ending. A few favorites that will open your mind are Fight Club, The Truman Show, and The Matrix.
Sitting comfortably in a quiet area is essentially what meditation is. Stillness can ease anxiety and get you thinking in different ways.
There are many different types of meditation and even guided practices online for free. Embrace the silent calmness of meditation and you’ll find peace and clarity.
A great way to help ease the restlessness that comes from the discomfort of sitting in silence is to take to yourself or something else, like the higher power in your head. Ask for help, guidance, or show gratitude.
Learn Something New
Our minds start to slow down as we get older, so it’s important to keep them sharp by learning new things.
Challenge yourself by taking up a new hobby. This is a great way to demonstrate to yourself perseverance and dedication, both of which inspire confidence!
Discovering a new talent or pastime activity is a great way to overcome fear. Search the internet for new things to learn — there are millions of people coming together to share their interests and insights!
Being mindful is being aware of the present moment. It allows you to feel, process, and release emotion without judgement.
It can be a difficult practice at the beginning but it’s just that, practice. Applying mindfulness to yourself will help with kindness, compassion, and acceptance.
It gets easier the more you do it and it will make you feel better about yourself which, after all, is what we are trying to achieve with mental self care.
Unplug From Electronics
Technology is a blessing and a curse; it keeps us connected and can help with some forms of productivity, but oftentimes it is a huge distraction.
Social media is linked to all kinds of mental health issues like depression, anxiety, and low self esteem. So do yourself a favor and start with an hour of device-free time per day.
We can’t truly be in the moment if we’re on the phone or watching TV. If you’re brave enough to do an hour, keep extending the time each week and see how much clarity you’ll receive!
Being physically fit and healthy is not only great for your body but your mind as well. You know what they say, “healthy body = healthy mind.”
Exercising releases those good hormones like endorphins which promote a better mood, improve sleep, and reduce stress. Getting active also improves memory and cognitive function.
Cardio increases heart health and blood flow, bringing oxygen to the brain, which boosts overall health. All it takes is 30 minutes of physical activity 3-5 days a week— it doesn’t need to be intense or complicated either!
Improve your mental self care and get moving by walking, jogging, dancing or swimming.
Do Something You Used to Enjoy
A lot of times, a tell-tale sign of depression is when you stop doing things that once brought you joy. Doing something you used to love will boost your mood and make you feel good about yourself.
Even if it's difficult to pick back up again or slightly disappointing because you’re not as “good” as you used to be, that's not important. What matters is that you’re stimulating yourself in a positive way.
Take a Social Break
Sometimes, when we are down, we can find ourselves withdrawing from the people we are closest to or even people in general. Hanging out with friends and family that make us feel good about ourselves is an easy way to lift our spirits.
Pulling yourself out of the house or away from work to spend quality time with other people can actually make you forget why you were upset in the first place.
If you’re comfortable around certain people, you may even want to talk about what you're going through. This is a form of mental self care as well, because we all need to express ourselves, and having good people to listen can make all the difference.
Take a Day Off
There is absolutely nothing wrong with taking a mental health day. A day off every now and then will reduce stress and burnout, as well as provide you with more energy and positivity when you get back to work.
Improve the Quality of Your Sleep
Sleep is vital for our mental stability and brain function. Getting enough sleep can often be challenging, especially if we are staring at phones and computers all day.
Mental stimulation like reading can be helpful when trying to fall asleep. If reading doesn’t work, you can always try crystals as there are many wonderful stones that are great for improving sleep quality and dream recall.
Amethyst is a beautiful purple stone that is highly purifying. It is a wonderful sleep aid as its calm, restful nature promotes dreams and deep sleep.
Howlite is another great sleep aid. It provides a soothing energy that can alleviate stress and help with insomnia.
Simply place these stones by your bed or under your pillow to improve your sleep.
Declutter & Organize
Too much clutter is stressful, affects our ability to focus, and is just an eye sore. Clutter can be very overwhelming, and clearing it can be just as daunting.
Start with one spot at a time and don’t feel the pressure to throw everything away. Just tackle small areas of your home or office at a time. Think of it as a fun and productive way to improve your mental health. Or better yet, it can be part of your weekly mental self care routine!
Just like reading or learning, adult coloring is a positive way to stimulate and relax your brain. Coloring is a rewarding activity that can help you become more mindful and aware.
Take your mind off whatever it is that is worrying you and focus on staying in the lines of a tricky or intricate coloring page.
Have a “Selfish” Day
A lot of the time, we hear the world “selfish” as a negative thing, but it doesn’t have to be something bad! Taking a day for yourself and saying no to people can be a satisfying way to boost confidence and reduce resentment and stress.
Putting other people before yourself can leave you exhausted and sometimes even bitter. It is totally okay to put things off for a day and do whatever you want.
Don’t worry about being productive. Focus on you and try to relieve yourself of the “I should” way of thinking for one day!
They say “laughter is the best medicine,” and it is absolutely true. Laughter can relieve pressure and make you feel good. It enhances your oxygen intake, which stimulates your heart and lungs and brings oxygen into your brain, releasing more endorphins!
Include laughter into your mental self care task of the day by calling up a funny friend, going to a comedy show or watching a feel good movie.
Start your day off right with a good playlist or a favorite upbeat album. Listening to music will lower blood pressure, anxiety, and even physical pain as well as improve memory, sleep, and mental health.
Music is another brain workout that could get you physically moving and give you the confidence to embrace the day with a positive attitude.
Taking care of yourself is more than a proper diet, expensive fitness classes, or paying for a therapist.
Mental self care involves little actions throughout your day to improve your quality of life. It is simple, effective, and most often, completely free.
Self care starts with doing activities that are good for your mind, body, and spirit. Be creative and without fear! Challenge yourself to try new things or get back into old hobbies that brought you joy.
Taking care of yourself doesn’t require anything more than a positive mindset and being willing to put yourself first. Get a good night’s sleep and have fun with it!
* Crystals and stones should not be used as a substitute for medical advice or treatment. Please read our full disclosure notice here.