Ten tips for positive mental health

aisling.ie is a new initiative established by Mullingar Mental Health Association and Mullingar Soroptimist to promote good mental health. It is an information source for people dealing with personal crises.

Ten Tips for Positive Mental Health

  1. Get some fresh air

    Research proves that fresh air helps keep our mood positive and increases our sense of wellbeing. It's literally on the doorstep and it's free. A walk in the country or even in the back garden can help recharge our batteries.

  2. Eat Well

    There are strong links between what we eat and how we feel. Our brain needs a mix of nutrients to stay healthy and function well, just like other organs in the body. Eating a healthy, balanced diet and drinking plenty of water help to keep us feeling well in ourselves. Limiting high caffeine and sugary drinks and avoiding too much alcohol is also important.

  3. Don't judge yourself too harshly!

    We each have unique abilities and talents. Some of us make people laugh; some of us have green fingers. Whatever your talent is, don't underestimate it. Remind yourself of all your achievements, small and large. And don't dwell on mistakes that are long gone. Chances are, no one else remembers!

  4. Ask for help when you need it.

    We can all be overwhelmed by how we feel or because things have got on top of us. And sometimes we need to ask for help. It can all feel too much to cope with simply feels as we have too much to juggle. Work, or lack of it, family, illness, personal tragedy. Sadness. Life can be difficult. An understanding family member or friend might be the answer or you might feel the need to talk to a professional such as your family doctor or a counsellor. Asking for help when you can't cope is a sign of strength not weakness.

  5. Keep active

    Exercise releases chemicals in the brain that make us feel good. Regular exercise can boost our self-esteem and help us to concentrate and to sleep more soundly. With regular exercise, we look and feel better. Exercise also keeps the brain and other vital organs healthy. And it doesn't have to be a chore. Finding a sport or any energetic activity such as dancing which we really enjoy, is the key

  6. Get a good night's sleep

    To be productive, mentally sharp, emotionally balanced, and full of energy all day long, it is essential that we sleep well at night. Quite simply, the way we feel during our waking hours is dependent on whether we get a good night's sleep. Our day–to–day lifestyle choices make an enormous difference to the quality of our nightly rest. The amount of exercise we take, our diet and our alcohol intake, all have a bearing on it. Disrupted sleep patterns can be very destructive to our mental health. The family doctor can advise on creating a healthy sleep routine.

  7. Keep in touch with family and friends

    Friends and family can make us feel loved and cared for. Having supportive caring relationships is essential to maintain our sense of well being. We need people who love us for who we are. Most of us already know that those close relationships are the most important part of our lives. Sometimes we need to remind ourselves of that. Make the effort to write that letter, make that call.

  8. Talk about your feelings

    It's easy to lose perspective when we bottle things up and don't talk things through. Often we think people know that we feel neglected, overburdened or overwhelmed. Discussing calmly how we feel, can be a great relief.

  9. Have fun!

    Do things you enjoy: play cards, read a book or go bowling. Try and see the humour in little things. When we laugh, our body releases endorphins which make us feel good. The more we laugh and smile the better we feel.

  10. Dare to dream

    If you have a personal ambition, a dream for the future, don't tell yourself that it's foolish or impossible. Feeling hopeful about the future and taking steps to realise that ambition needs careful nurturing. The most extraordinary challenges have been overcome by ordinary people who had very big dreams and who refused to lose sight of those dreams.