Having a mental illness can take a toll on, not only your mental health, but your physical health and personal hygiene. For me, when I was in the beginning of my diagnosis of my mental illness, I did not take good care of myself at all, I had poor hygiene. It was almost like I was a little kid again, having my mom and dad take care of me. A lot of people who don’t gave mental illness see people that do have mental illness, as lazy when they don’t keep up with themselves, and that isn’t the case at all. When you have a mental illness, all sense of self care and upkeep goes out of the window. We are too busy in our own world filled with our mental illness that we don’t find the time to do what is best for ourselves. Also, Depression, at least from my experience, play a big part in poor hygiene. The upkeep of yourself is another hard task that we just cannot seem to bring ourselves to do. Somethings as simple as taking a shower or brushing our hair feels like an impossible task, so below I conducted a list of self-care tips I personally use to knock the funk off me whenever I have an episode of relapse, and hopefully you will find something you like and can implement it into your routine too!
- Taking hot baths– Taking baths, sometimes with salts, scents, or certain soaps, can relieve stress. Taking a bath can help improve your personal hygiene while relaxing you, that way you are still achieving cleanliness while being relaxed.
- Brushing your hair at least every other day– Sometimes we don’t want to get out of bed to get ready to be productive, and that includes, showering, changing our clothes, brushing our teeth and hair, if anything, keep a brush on your bed side table and brush your hair once every other day, at the least. It can be relaxing, and you got your self-care in for the day
- Getting your nails done– I personally go and get my nails done a lot, to treat myself and make myself feel pretty. When you go to the nail salon, you don’t have to get acrylics or gel. You can simply ask for a cuticle cutback, nail trim, and a healthy clear coating to go on top of your nails to help them grow. Its simple, but goes a long way.
- Cleaning you room– Cleaning your room when you have Depression can seem like a stretch, but for me it is a stress reliever. I am a neat freak, and living in a room that is in disarray further triggers my depression, so tidying up can relieve some of that anxiety and depression.
- Change your clothes everyday– I admit, I fall victim to not changing my clothes at least once a day when I’m in a depression rut because I usually just stay in bed not feeling like I need to change clothes. But even if you decide to stay in bed for the next two days, changing your clothes can keep you clean and make you feel like you’ve accomplished even the simplest of tasks.
- Burn your favorite candle– Personally, I love candles because they provide my favorite smells and make me feel like I am in a relaxed, controlled environment. Burning your favorite smells can increase your mood more than you think, try it.
- Listen to your favorite playlist– Listening to your favorite type of music, sung by your favorite artists can make you feel so much better. I know whenever I am sad or upset, I immediately put on my Beyoncé playlist to make me feel like I can run the world (pun intended).
- Binge watch your favorite show– I binge watch Law and Order SVU because it is one of my favorite shows and makes me forget about all my problems I have, and gives me a reason to engage in something else other than being sucked in by my mental illness. Binge watching anything that makes you happy is always a plus.
- Sleep in– This is probably my favorite self-care tip because I utilize this one religiously. Sleeping in has a negative connotation because people see it as lazy, but having a mental illness can cause physically fatigue, and a little extra R&R is not going to hurt, it will, in fact, help. Whenever I sleep in, I wake up feeling a little better than if I would have if I ah woken up early.
- Make a small healthy change– I recently made a small healthy change by drinking water 75% of the time, and Dr. Pepper or anything else filled with sugar, 25% of the time. I used to be able to drink a whole 2 liter of Dr. Pepper by myself for two days because I am that obsessed with it, but obviously it wasn’t good for me, causing excess acne, which I didn’t appreciate. Making a healthy change, can trigger a positive, healthy change mentally.
- Call someone you love– I call my parents, mostly my mom at least 4 times a day, no exaggeration. I love talking to my momma because she makes me happy. I am in college away from home, so I am homesick for sure, and calling or facetiming my parents puts me in a better mood, plus that gives me someone to tell my good news to. Calling someone you love relieves stress and emphasizes your love you have for them, increasing the greatness of your day, even slightly.
- Watch a stand-up comedy– I love standup comedy. My favorite standup comedians I love to watch religiously are Kevin Hart, Kat Williams, and Steve Harvey. Whenever I need a good laugh or a want a good laugh, I go to Netflix or YouTube and search for them.
- Blogging- Blogging obviously is something I had to put in here because what would a blog post about positive ways to increase your physical and mental health be without blogging being a part of the list. Blogging allows me to get my thoughts out and help others while helping myself. Reading other blogs helps me in my recovery and my hopes is to do the same for them.
I hope this post gave you some ideas of how to take good care of yourself :). Don’t forget to like, share, and follow, xoxo.