Physically if we want to be "healthy" we all know that we have to eat a good nutritionally balanced diet, do the 10,000 steps a day they tell us, and try to do 3x 30 minutes of moderate exercise each week. We all know this right? Because this is advertised and preached on a regular basis by doctors and media alike.
These days however everyone keeps banging on about mental health & wellbeing, but it's hard to actually know how to take care of your own mind isn't it?? With the entire world's population currently going through a pandemic, we are all learning a lot about our own stress and anxiety levels. And it's difficult to know how best to address these, if we have never really had to before.
It is vitally important that we look after our own needs first, otherwise we would never be able to look after other's if we go man down. "you cannot pour from an empty cup." So with that in mind, keep your cup full and allow others to have access to the overflow, if that makes any sense to you guys. IT IS NOT SELFISH TO PUT YOURSELF FIRST, IT IS A NECESSITY.
So this post isn't me preaching and telling you what you must do, it is simply me telling you what works for me, in the hope it will inspire you to take some time out for yourself and find out what works for you.
I'm not going to lie, I am massively struggling with my mental health at the moment. I don't know why because I have so so many things that I am grateful for and blessed with. However I am absolutely bogged down mentally with loneliness among other feelings. Sure I have the Tribe, but it is not the same. They keep me busy, occupied, but I AM STILL ALONE. I cannot talk to my children about my fears, my finances, my feelings, because as parents it is simply unfair to put our emotional baggage onto our children. Sure we can say stuff like "I'm tired guys, give me a hand with chores" or "I can't be arsed cooking tonight kids I'm done in and sore, what do you want from the kebaby?" But we cannot say what we really feel.
I cannot sit down with anyone at the end of a long day of coursework, home schooling, housework, paying bills, keeping the tribe alive and just have a cuppa and put the world to rights can I. At the end of the day it's just me, sat there on my own, engulfed by the silent house and my own thoughts as the tribe sleep.
You mindlessly open up the Fakebook app again and scroll away the minutes, taking a sneak peak into other people's seemingly perfect lives, reading the horror headlines of the media telling us only what they want us to know, doom, gloom and false perfection. It is so so easy to become disheartened that you aren't good enough or you're not as accomplished by playing this comparison game subconsciously. Allowing the negativity to seep in to our conscious thought's and become overwhelmed by the utter disarray in the world at the moment.
So I unplug. I take a step back from all social media. I protect my mind from it. I get out in nature (chronic pain allowing mind!!) I retreat to my soul place. Betws Y Coed/Maenan and I breathe in the fresh air, I plunge my feet in the icy water's of the lake, I allow the current to push the dark water through my fingers, I Kick up Autumn leaves and marvel at the dazzling display of colours and the golden beams of sun breaking through the wilting kaleidoscope of the trees canopies. And I breathe out the bullshit, the worries, the fear, I let it all go.
I rest and recoup, I get my mind back into gear, I oil the cogs. I think about all the things I am grateful for, how beautiful and blessed my life is. I allow the hot water of the hotel jacuzzi bath to wash away any negativity, I close my eyes in the woods and feel the wind upon my skin and dancing through my hair. I Don't believe in God but I do believe in the power of the earth, the universe, mother nature. We are all part of this magical organic planet and we never truly leave.
That feeling you get when you're sat at the beach watching the waves crash against the shore, watching the sunset, the tingles you get up your back and on your arms as the wind hits you. That's the universe telling you, you're not alone. When you're sat in the garden with the log burner crackling and the heat of it warms your soul as you look up into the night sky and watch the stars, the wonder and the awe you feel. That is the universe telling you, you're not alone. When you're sat by the lake watching the autumn leaves swirling in the current of the black abyss that is the water. And you're listening to it making it's way through the maze of rocks as the wind blows, carrying with it the woody smells of the earth around you as you let all your worries and fears float away with it. That is the universe telling you, you're not alone.
I cannot stress it enough, we are children of this earth, whenever you feel bogged down by material shit and life in general. Get back to your roots, get out in nature. Breathe it in.