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To Get You Started

If your looking for some quick wins to start building your Mental Fitness, pick and choose from the ideas below.

"We are what we repeatedly do. Exellence, then, is not an act, but a habit." - Will Durant


Over this year, try making monthly resolutions, not yearly. This means that if you fall short of a goal, you don't have to wait a whole year to 'start again.' Instead, wait a month, and start a fresh.


If you would like to try meditation, but haven't yet found the right strategy, avoid making the common mistake of trying to 'clear your mind' when sitting still. This doesn't work. Instead try to observe your thoughts and simply watch them coming and going.


Feelings are not fact. Realising that simply because you have a thought, does not mean it is true. Often our thoughts are created by outdated or unhelpful beliefs that we have never taken the time to stop and question. Get in the habit of asking yourself: "Is this true?, especially when negative thoughts arise.


Be mindful of your news consumption, particularly online. Remember that the news is designed to appeal to your negative bias, your fear instinct, and your tendancy to find simple answers to complex issues. Think twice before sharing articles or commenting online, decide whether you are building others up or tearing them down, and try to find opposing views on issues to stay balanced.


Instead of merely eating well to good, consider how the things you choose to eat impact how you feel. Often, many of us give up on good nutrician because we don't see progress on the scales. Don't just think about what your avoiding, but alkso the good stuff that helps our mental healthwhich includes omega-3s, berries, legumes, nuts and greens.


According to the most widely respected research on human motivation, self-determination theory (SDT), human beings have three vital motivationalk needs,. We need to feel competent, we need to feel autonomy, and we need to feel relatedness. Do your actions regularly help others feel 'good at something', 'in control', or 'part of something'?


Try not to keep worries in your head, especially when you're winding down for bed. Invest in a notebook or 'dump pad' to download your racing thoughts onto paper. Remember, our minds were designed for having thoughts, not for holding them.


If you are looking to get better quality sleep, consider the stimulants you consume prior to bed. Foe example, while alcohol helps us to fall asleep quickly, it actually leads to low-quaality light sleep which makes us foggy the next morning. Also, try to avoid caffeinated drinks after 12pm as best you can, especially coffee, since caffeine stays in your system for many hours after you consume it.


You don't need to sit down and meditate for hours to be mindful. Instead, find mindful moments throughout your day. For example, try mindful showers, where you focus on the feeling of the water hittng your skin. Or, try mindfully brushing your teeth, where all you focus on is the sensation of the tooth brush and the taste of the tooth paste in your mouth.


The classic way to build gratitude is to notice ' three good things' that went well during the day. Share them with others, or write them down, and make specific things to be grateful for so the practice doesn't become boring or stale.


Make important decisions in the morning, or after eating a meal. Research shoes that we make clearer and more effective decisions when rested and well-fed. Be conscious of planning important meetings or interactions just before lunch-time, or just before finishing work for the day.


Early mornings are often the most sacred and peaceful time of our day. To avoid the habit of instantly checking your phone, and thereby already dealing with the world's problems at 6am, replace your phone alarm clock with a real alarm clock. Charge your phone in another room where you'll be less likely to pick it up until you need to. You will likely feel calmer and less anxious.


Remember that having problems in life doesn't mean you are failing. No-one has it all together. Everyone has something going on. Nobody is happy all the time, even if on social media they claim to be. Try to mesure your success based on how well what you achieved at the end of the day matched what you hoped to achieve at the start of the day.


When describing how you feel, use language that helps you seperate yourself from transient emotions. For example, rather than saying: "I am anxious", which implies that you really are always anxious, try using the phrase, "I am feeling anxious", which implies that you and the feeling are seperate, and helps you accept that it might pass or change.


Be mindful of your explanatory style, or your 'PPP' when describing the causes for positive and negative events in your life. Avoid the trap of describing negative events as permanent, pervasive and personal. For example, if you were to lose a job, avoid the belief that you will be unemployed forever, that every area of your life will now be bleak, and that it was completely your fault. Instead, try to think of negative events as temporary, domain-specific, and down to external forces.

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