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Other ways to help yourself and others:
1. Accept yourself
We’re all different, but the one thing we have in common is that none of us is perfect. Many different things, including our background, race, gender, religion and sexuality, make us who we are. Everyone has something to offer and everyone is entitled to being respected, including you! So try not to be too hard on yourself.
2. Get involved
Meeting people and getting involved in new things can make all the difference for you and for others. Join a club, meet up with friends, sign up for a class. There are many things to do if you look around. Not only will you feel better, but you will benefit from supporting others too.
3. Keep active and exercise
Regular exercise can really help to give your mental health a boost. Find something you enjoy like swimming, walking, dancing or cycling and then just do it. It may be hard work, but it will be worth the effort. Regular exercise can really help you feel more positive about things.
4. Eat healthy
Having a balanced diet will not only help the way you feel, but it will also help the way you think. Try to eat regularly and aim to eat five portions of fruit and vegetables every day. Good food is essential for your mind and body to work properly.
5. Keep in contact
You don’t have to be strong and struggle on alone. Friends are important, especially at difficult times, so it is good to keep in contact with them. Use the technology we have available in today's world to stay connected with friends and family.
If too much busyness is getting you down, make time to relax. Fit things into your day that help you unwind, like listening to music, reading or watching films. Find something that you enjoy and that will work for you. Even 10 minutes of downtime during a busy day can make all the difference and help you manage stress better.
7. Express yourself
Our creativity often goes unnoticed, even by ourselves. Like any skill, our ability to effectively express our feelings will go dormant unless given a regular outlet. Find a way to express your emotions and needs on a regular basis, such as journaling, blogging, painting, writing, or some other method.
8. Talk about it
Many of us can feel isolated and overwhelmed by problems. Talking about how you feel will help. Confide in someone you trust and if you feel there is nobody to talk to, call a helpline or hotline in your community. Some people are comfortable chatting with an online or real-life friend, but others are embarrassed to start the conversation. You’d be amazed at just how good you will feel if you can just take that first step.
9. Ask for help
If you were feeling physically sick you would see a doctor, so don’t be embarrassed about getting help for your mental health. Everyone needs help from time to time and there is nothing wrong with asking for it. In fact, asking for help is a sign of personal strength.
10. Talk to a professional
Many people run away from the idea of talking to a professional about their problems. They believe that it is a sign of weakness or admitting their own failure in life. Yet it takes enormous inner strength and willpower to acknowledge that most of us are not experts in all aspects of human living, and then to take action and seek out additional assistance. Don’t hesitate to talk to a professional if you feel like your life has reached a dead-end and self-help methods haven't helped you.
by Jane Framingham Ph.D