Monday 14 August 2017

Simple DIYS To Improve Your Mental Health

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Private mental health care is expensive, and NHS services come with a long waiting list. It's so disheartening to reach out for help which takes enormous amounts of courage, to only be told that you will either have to find the money for private, which for most families is just not possible or to hang on in there for months until NHS care becomes available. 

These simple DIYs are not going to cure your mental illness, but they definitely can help if you left to cope by yourself while you wait for NHS services. Alongside lifestyle changes and medication (if applicable to you and your illness) they can really help make a positive difference. 

Even if you don't have a mental illness, it's important to look after your mental health. Which is why you might find these super useful. If you are going through a particularly stressful time or a period of grief, these DIYs might help you get through the difficult patch. All of the ones I've included in this post are really cheap and easy to do, so they are suitable for everyone.

DIY Mindfulness Jars 

This is one of my favourite DIYs in this post. I've created two of these, and I use them most days. They are incredibly effective and easy to create, honestly, if I could create them anyone could. The idea behind them is, when you are feeling stressed or panicky you simply shake these and watch the glitter. Hopefully, they help you calm down and feel present in the moment. 

All you need is a clear jar (if you want to be super resourceful you can use an old one from your cupboard) Fill the jars near to the top with water and then add lots of glitter and glitter glue in a colour of your choice. You can also add food colouring if you desire. Then put the lid back on tightly, shake and watch. It's as simple as that. 

DIY positivity Jars 

If you suffer from depression or low mood, I think you will really like this DIY. It can be really easy to get all consumed by negative thoughts and forget the positives within your life. Depression tells you that you are a burden and nobody loves you. It can be easy to believe this, but by having these jars, it helps you keep your negative thoughts at bay. 

All you need is an empty jar. If you are feeling creative, you could decorate the jar with stickers, labels, etc. Then simply fill it with notes, letters or print outs from friends, family or loved ones who have said nice things about you. I printed off my blog and Instagram comments from you guys as well as some special emails from people who mean a lot to me. When I'm feeling down, I read them, and it's almost guaranteed to lift my mood. 

Feel Good Songs Playlists 

I don't know if you call this a DIY, but I'm going to because it's done wonders for my mental health. I created a feel good playlist on Spotify which includes 50 songs which boost my mood no matter what. You can check out what songs are in my playlist here. 

I think music can have such a significant influence on your mental health both positive and negative. I find listening to sad songs really brings me down, but these tunes in my playlist really lift my mood. Don't get me wrong they don't cure my mental health problems, but it definitely makes bad mental health days more bearable. 

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Scrapbooking is so fun but something I don't get time to do very often. As a child, I kept numerous scrapbooks including tickets and leaflets from days out and holidays with my illegible handwriting. As I got older, my scrapbooks got more mature and sophisticated. I had special photo corners to stick in the photos instead of glue. 

I used wallpaper samples as backgrounds and took time over the presentation of the pages. I now scrapbook the most important and enjoyable events. It's so lovely to look through the book to remind myself of all the high points and amazing things I've done. It reminds me of how much I can achieve in the future, as well, which is perfect for bad mental health days where I have no hope for the future and believe that nothing will get better.

Positive affirmation cards 

If you don't know what an affirmation is, it's basically a short phrase you say to yourself, multiple times every day, for an extended period of time. The idea is the more you say it, the more your brain starts to believe it. These sayings can be things like ' I am brave' ' I am good enough' etc. After you have picked a few affirmations that apply to you (Google has plenty of inspiration if you are stuck) 

You can write them down on small bits of card and carry them around with you in your wallet or purse. This means you have constant reminders of what they are so you don't forget to say them. You can print them on a card or handwrite them and decorate as you desire. By saying these positive affirmations, it helps lessen depression, anxiety and stress. You're going out of your way to replace this constant stream of negative thoughts with more positive ones, something which will highly likely lift your mood.

These are all super easy to create, some of them even too easy! I've tried and tested these and found that they do have a positive difference to my mental health. I hope they have the same effect on you. 

If you try any of these or have any other DIYs you use to improve your mental health, let me know in the comments below. 

Thank you for reading, as always X

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