You often come across people talking about fitness, eating better, earning more and spending more time with friends and family, but very few people take the time to sit down and reflect upon one of the most important aspects of their lives: the state of their mental health.
All human beings have the potential to become great leaders & leading a healthy lifestyle. However, sometimes daily challenges and unforeseen circumstances can build walls that alter the path of our missions. Read below to understand the first steps to improving your mental health, and your long-term career and leadership success.
1. Get Enough Sleep
The most obvious, and yet the most common to make excuses against. If you do not have enough time for sleep be sure to schedule time in, the more time you can allocate to rest the more efficient your performance will be when it comes to ticking items off your task list.
Getting between 7 to 9 hours sleep each night is crucial to staying focused the next day and will automatically improve your motivation throughout the day, not to mention make you feel a lot happier!
2. Drink Water
Feeling irritable and deflated is a common consequence suffered due to dehydration. Drinking 1.5-2 litres of water per day can be a task in itself, particularly if the majority of your day is spent staring at the computer and lack of high intensity physical activities.
Just to name a few, drinking enough water relieves fatigue, promotes weight loss, flushes out toxins, boosts immune system, prevents cramps and sprains and improves skin complexion….that should motivate you enough.
3. Exercise 30 minutes per Day
Like sleep, many adults claim that they cannot find the time of 30 minutes a day to exercise. The same advice extends for this: make time through prioritization.
Exercising is the best natural remedy for stress relief. The quickening of the heart pumps oxygen and nutrients to your tissues and helps your cardiovascular system improve efficiency.
Not only will you feel better, your sculpted, toned and muscular body will also thank you for it!
4. Consider Your Diet
The popularity of take-away foods, sugars, high-energy and snack foods have risen over the past few decades, correlating with the growth of depression and anxiety.
The regularity of eating and portion control should also be taken into consideration when considering dietary modification.
For example, eating a large meal before bed is likely to make for a very dazed wake the next morning, which is a result of your blood sugar spiking and crashing before you even wake up, resulting in feeling fatigued for the rest of the day.
5. Dress to Impress
Now that you are feeling better on the inside, it is now time to focus on your exterior and the self-brand that is on-display daily.
Improving confidence is a key component of a healthy mental state, dressing well will radiate self-worth and foster a more positive mental outlook.
Everyone wants to be remembered, when making that first impression it is not only your personality that has the potential to create a lasting impact but is combined with on-point style.
Being well dressed is a small step investment that creates momentous benefits for your mental health and successful career progression.
6. Don’t just be Prepared, Stay Prepared
Time management is not only about ticking items off the need to be done list, but still having enough time left over for things that are important to you and your health.
Each morning when you wake, try focussing on your three priorities for the three main periods of the day.
For example in the morning your three priorities could be shower, breakfast, commuting. You know how long each of these will take so schedule this time with some contingency. Keep bringing yourself back to those top three removing all distractions and eventually your routine will work like clockwork and smaller tasks can be added without the worry of running out of time.
7. Give Yourself
Previous research indicates that volunteering is linked to good mental health and emotional wellbeing, with a significant improvement in mental health.
In many cases volunteering gave a sense of fulfilment and purpose which then in turn positively impacted their motivation, commitment, and overall mental wellbeing.
Not only does volunteering improve your mood and your self-esteem, it also improves your physical health when strenuous activities are involved.
8. Set Goals
Setting goals that are specific, challenging and achievable will improve your performance as you are less likely to be distracted if you have a time frame and set tasks clearly outlined.
The ‘feel-good’ chemical released in your brain when you achieve something is dopamine. Each time you check something off your checklist, you get a shot of dopamine which encourages repetition of the corresponding behaviour.
9. Talk it out
Humans were not made to live in isolation. Take some time out of your day for social interaction, whether it be a chat about the weekend in the office kitchen, offering assistance to a teammate or a heart-to-heart with a friend.
Voicing how you feel in specifics will assist in putting problems in perspective and also boost your morale and feeling of inclusion and support.
10. Get your Finances in Order
Poor mental health means managing money can be more difficult, as often funds are spent to make yourself feel better or impulsive decisions are made without any long-term goal in focus.
If you find yourself worrying about finances and investments, it is recommended that you create a specific strategy to manage your money, or even ask for professional help.
Without an active and healthy mental state it is very difficult to succeed in any dimension of your life.
Poor concentration will impact your working life, lack of motivation may cause tension between family and friends and poor finances will chew on your self-confidence.
Put these steps into action for a more successful future!