Lose away those extra pounds and you become more healthy.
Shred off the excess fat and you become fitter.
Incorporate healthy eating regularly and it becomes a mindful, powerful habit that brings about change.
You see, dieting does not affect one physically, but rather helps one also to have better self-perceptions and healthier habits that bring about confidence, accountability and self-worth.
And like how your personal space affects your mental health, your diet also does the same thing. Eating healthily and mindfully helps your brain function better which then allows you to be at your best always.
So now, imagine if you can also have a healthy mental diet so that you can remain mentally fit. How different will your life be then if you are not overwhelmed by worries, anxieties or stress? Probably your life will be a thousand, or even a million times better. Haha!
Well, your prayers have been answered because now, I will share with you your guide to a healthy mental diet. Thank me later guys. haha!
But before we begin, allow me to introduce you to this premise of dieting: when dieting, there are things (food and habits) you need to consider: what you need to totally stop, what you can do less of, what you need to pause first, what you can do more of and what you should finally go for. A whole lot of work but hey, taking responsibility for yourself and your growth is part of you becoming your own #bestmeever so might as well commit to it.
Let's apply the same concept to your healthy mental diet for better understanding.
This is one of the biggest, if not the biggest source of anxiety and worries among individuals because it puts unnecessary pressure and emotional and mental burden on a person who thinks that he/she is falling behind in life. This is not particularly true because everyone is ALLOWED to breeze through life at his/her own pace, in his own space. We all have different journeys so instead of complaining about what others have or don't have, why not just focus on yourself and your growth? Living life was never meant on anyone else's standards other than your own. Don't let the lives of others make you feel that you have less in life. You don't know what happens behind what they are showing to the rest of the world. For all you know, you might actually be doing so much better than you thought. Give yourself more credit. And respect your own personal journey.
2. What you need to lessen: your time on social media
Stop escaping reality. Remember, not facing your problems can only make matters worse in the long run. Instead of spending so much time online, why not try to become 100% present in your current space. Acknowledge both the good and the bad. Because every time you recognize what needs work and act on it, you allow yourself to grow. Don't fall into the trap of having social media dictate what kind of life you should have because more often than not, standards are quite ridiculous online. While it's ok to stay connected online, it's so much more important to build genuine connections with people who really matter to you offline: your friends, families, loved ones and yourself, outside of the social media realm. By doing so, you allow your mind to be at peace with the present as it focuses on what really is, than what it could have been based on what you've seen online.
3. What you need to pause: your own expectations
Hurrying through life thinking there's a deadline or an exact timeline to follow will only make you more anxious and sad if you're not able to live up to your own expectations (and that of others too). Well now, allow yourself to breathe by just letting yourself be, going and growing with the flow, without the need to hurry or beat yourself up because of your own expectations. Know that whatever it is that you've been through or going through as of the moment, those are leading you to where you're meant to be. So be patient with your own journey and be grateful for the space you're in. And yes, you don't need to get married at 25, have a family before 30, be a millionaire at 35 or retire at 40. You can live life and appreciate it for what it is, not based on how you expected it to be.
4. What you can do more of: me time
Self-care is never selfish. So give yourself just that. Take off the multiple hats that you're wearing on a daily basis and just focus on giving yourself what is due: undivided time, attention and a whole lot of loving. Make sure that every single day, you squeeze in ample time in your schedule to do the things you love and reflect in between. Rest improves your mood and brain and body function so don't ever compromise it for the sake of any deadline. I said this before and will say it again for emphasis: your work can wait, but your life can't. At the end of the day, your wellness and wellbeing matter more.
5. What you can finally go for: self-improvement classes
Learning is a continuous process and every time you allow yourself to upskill you get a renewed sense of joy and fulfillment. Now is the best time to enroll in that class you've always wanted, whether it's a baking class, a yoga class or even a coaching program. You are the best investment you can ever make so don't ever short change yourself by scrimping on your learnings. Remember this: when you stop learning, you stop growing. So don't even think of going that direction. You deserve more. Always.
Staying mentally fit is one of the biggest commitment you can make to yourself.
It may not be easy, it may take some time and a whole lot of effort.