Common advice to people under stress is to look after yourself. The question is how? As stated on page 15, how we are feeling mentally and physically can affect how we are thinking. Taking your health and wellbeing into your own hands helps build resilience. It does not mean you won’t have difficulties and challenges. Everyone does at times. While there is no guarantee, these things do help to build your resources.
1. Positive steps to emotional health and wellbeing
(Positive Steps, Health Education Authority, 1999)
They are things we should do regularly including:
Accepting who you are
Our beliefs, background, culture, religion, and sexuality make us who we are. Everyone is entitled to respect.
Talking about it
Most people feel overwhelmed by their problems sometimes. It can help to share your feelings. Who do you have you can openly talk to about your feelings or situation? If you feel you don’t have someone to talk to, help-lines are available.
Keeping in touch with friends and family
You don’t have to be strong and struggle on alone. Friends and family are important, especially at difficult times. Keep in touch.
Meeting new people and getting involved in things can make all the difference for you.
Regular exercise really helps if you’re feeling depressed or anxious. It can give you more energy too. Find something you enjoy - sport, swimming, walking, cycling or dancing.
Learning new skills
Learning a new skill can increase your confidence whether it’s for pleasure, to make new friends or improve your chances of a job.
Doing something creative
Creative things can help if you are anxious or low and increase your confidence. Music, writing, painting, poetry, cooking, gardening - experiment to find something you enjoy.
Try and make time for yourself. Fit things into your day that help you unwind - reading, listening to music, prayer or meditation - whatever you enjoy or find relaxing.