Taking care of your mental health is critical and often overlooked. One in 25 Americans suffers from severe mental health problems, so doing what you can to manage your health is vital. The New Year is the perfect opportunity to reevaluate, set goals, and prioritize your mental well-being. Here are some tips to focus on your mental health in the New Year and beyond.
Set Mental Health Goals
Accomplishing New Year’s Resolutions may feel like an impossible challenge, especially for those who have failed to do so. However, resolutions are essential to getting into a goal-oriented mindset for the New Year.
The key to successful New Year’s Resolutions is to make them realistically achievable. Instead of meditating daily, consider something more manageable, like meditating twice weekly. A twice-per-week commitment won’t seem as overwhelming, and you will be more likely to succeed.
Goals also need to be measurable to know when you have achieved them. Write your goals down somewhere that you see frequently. A note by your work desk or a notes app on your phone will work perfectly. Seeing your resolutions keeps you in a goal-oriented mindset, so you don’t need to contend with the anxiety of remembering resolutions on your own.
Start With Something Small
Beginning with a small step can go a long way. Once that small step becomes a habit, you can reach a bigger goal or resolution. Incrementally creating good habits means you’ll find long-term change easier because you’re not making a drastic change but rather a continuing series of small changes.
Prioritize Going to Therapy
The holidays are a challenging time. Internal strife, mental stress, anxiety, and physical tension often increase during the holidays. Working on your mental health is always beneficial but can be particularly helpful after getting through the holidays. Therapy is an effective tool that can help people cope, heal, and lead more fulfilling lives. Studies show that therapy can improve and modify your brain function to a healthier state. For example, PTSD patients who receive short-term therapy have less severe symptoms two years post-treatment.
If you’re feeling stressed, anxious, or depressed, therapy can help. Treatment can benefit those with no pre-existing mental health issues. You’ll get the strategies and tools needed to contend with everyday stressors. Learning healthy coping skills can reduce the chances of relapse and set you on a path to long-term success.
Resolve Sleep Issues
About one in every three Americans fail to get the recommended daily amount of sleep, and as many as 70 million people across the U.S. contend with sleep disorders. Unfortunately, sufficient sleep, especially REM sleep, is necessary for the brain to process emotional information. Without it, you won’t be able to process thoughts or store memories. Studies show that this can worsen your mood, cause emotional reactivity issues, and even correlate with mental health disorders and suicidal behaviors. Committing to a consistent sleep schedule will help your mind and body get the rest you need.
Social activity helps people engage with others and make healthy decisions, and it lowers the likelihood of dealing with anxiety and depression. It’s important that you see someone you care about in person regularly because this helps foster a critical sense of social connectedness so that you retain support through hard times. Text or call friends and family members regularly. Make sure to stay emotionally present when talking to them.
Block Out Time for Yourself
Support groups and friendly interaction all boost mental health, but you also need to take time for healthy hobbies if you want to stave off anxiety and sadness. Take a small chunk of time each day and designate it to do something you enjoy. Reading, writing for fun, crafting, exercising, or playing a musical instrument are great activities that help you unwind and get more in tune with your feelings.
Improve Your Mental Health in the New Year
Now that you know how to begin the New Year by emphasizing mental health, it’s time to start caring for yourself. After setting goals and writing down resolutions, seek therapy and other professional assistance for your pre-existing mental health issues. At Comprehensive Wellness Centers, we’re committed to helping you improve your quality of life in 2024 and beyond. We’ll help you get your overall wellness back on track with a customized approach and expert tips. Verify your insurance to begin the process of getting treatment.