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4 Simple Daily Practice For A Happier Calmer Year
As a nation, our collective mental health is on the decline.
As we become increasingly isolated from our communities, fall into the comparison trap of social media and find ourselves caught in a spiral of anxiety, work-related stress and insomnia, something has to give.
Against a landscape of political and economic uncertainty, prioritising our mental health becomes ever more important.
Rather than waiting for a crisis, we need to proactively manage the situation by making our wellbeing part of the daily agenda.
Often, looking after ourselves in this way can seem like an abstract concept, but really it’s about the small, regular steps and little changes inhabit. So if you’re aiming for a happier, calmer state of being in 2020, here’s how to form the habits that will help… daily practice
Learn Some Breathing Techniques
The role of something as simple and fundamental as breathing in regulating stress levels is easy to underestimate.
But controlled breathing techniques have the power to calm our minds and stop the release of the stress hormone, cortisol, into our bloodstream.
Focusing on a slow inhale and exhale while grounding yourself by taking note of each of your five senses, in turn, is a great tool for managing a panic response.
Most of the time, our fight-or-flight response is firing away for no reason and we’re catastrophizing about the future in ways that aren’t helpful. Taking a moment to step out of the situation and ground yourself can stop this in its tracks.
Spend Time In Contemplation
Our brains are always on, and the nature of our 24-hour culture and long working hours mean that many of us struggle to switch off the chatter in our brains and relax.
Carving out 15 minutes a day for some conscious relaxation and contemplation can help to reset your mind.
Whether you want to spend this time in simple prayer and contemplation of his message of peace or whether you prefer to use the aid of a mindfulness app to bring you back to yourself and restore calm, making this quiet time a daily practice can really benefit your state of mind.
Start A Gratitude Journal as a Daily Practice
There’s lots of research to show that this simple practice of reflection is a really useful tool when it comes to promoting your mental wellbeing.
A Gratitude Journal helps you to process challenging situations, work through your emotional response, gain some perspective and also appreciate what you have.
By simply recording three things that have made you glad – something as simple as a hug with your kids or a walk in the winter sunshine – you can lift your spirits and begin to really reflect on the good in your life.
Make A Happy Playlist
Music that we have a positive association with can really give us a boost when we’re feeling anxious and low.
Specialists in anxiety have recently shown that you can reduce those feelings by 65 percent with the right tunes, as well as identifying the most relaxing song in the world.
Putting together a playlist of tracks that make you feel relaxed or have happy associations is a great idea as it’s so easy to pop it on whenever you need a boost.