Have you noticed how anxiety and stress levels go through the roof during chaotic, disorganised days? I mean, how could they not when you’re running around and not getting anything done?
There are many benefits of a solid daily routine and improving your mental health is one of them.
When we stick to a daily schedule or routine we reduce stress by eliminating the uncertainty of each day and having a clear vision for what you will achieve.
Ready to start? Ok. Well firstly its important to know that creating and maintaining a routine may not be easy. Set realistic expectations for yourself. Working with a therapist can help tremendously. But there are strategies YOU can try on your own to create a daily routine that works for you.
Five Important Daily Routines that help Boost Mental Health
Getting enough sleep.
When establishing your daily processes, sleep plays a prominent role. The time we enter sleep and wake should be at approximately the same time each day, this is extremely important in developing a routine.
Sleep routines are especially important for people with bipolar disorder because sleep deprivation is one of the biggest triggers for manic episodes.
My goal is to stay as physically healthy as possible, but the daily routine also helps me focus my mental energy on something I can control. This is especially helpful when I feel that other things in my life are uncontrollable.
Getting Out of the House
Although our house can be our haven, often if we spend too much time in the same surroundings feelings of isolation can set in. Getting outside is important for mental health and even more so for those who work from home. Each day schedule a task to do outside of the home as part of your daily routine, whether it is shopping for groceries or going out for a walk.
Work takes up most of a regular day for most of us.
It’s also important to have some structured time, such as “having goals, places to be, things to do. For most of us work is the structured element of each day that takes up most of our day. Work naturally provides structure. But if you work part-time or can’t work because of your illness, fill your days with other activities (like Volunteering commitments, regular appointments to exercise or pursing a hobby / learning a new skill).
Keeping in regular contact with your support system is an important step to take. Our lives are so busy these days and often face-to-face catch ups are rare. Don’t just plan to see friends or family when you have spare time, make an appointment with yourself to do it regularly. It doesn’t need to always be the same person a good idea is to schedule weekly coffee dates with a friend and sees your therapist every other week (or as often as needed – not just in times of crisis). Having the knowledge that you have set aside time to talk to someone about anything your dealing with can feel like a burden lifted.
Creating and maintaining a routine takes effort. But it’s a worthwhile and critical part of effectively maintaining good health for both mind and body.
Share with us what you do everyday to empower your mental health.