Do you ever feel like you're just existing from day to day? Very often, we're all rushing around doing everything we need to get done, working all hours possible, looking out for everyone else, worrying about the future... I could go on! But in all of this day-to-day hustle and bustle, do you ever stop and actually think about yourself and your mental wellbeing? Nope? Didn't think so!
Neither did I until I actually made a conscious effort to do it. You see, that's the thing. It actually has to be an effort at first. It's just like with physical fitness. When you first get on a treadmill, 1 minute feels like an awfully long time, whereas if you build up and do 1 minute, then 1 minute 30 seconds, then 2 minutes etc., soon you'll be doing 20 minutes and not hurting as much as when you did that first minute!
I found it was the same with consciously thinking about my mental wellbeing. At first, taking a 10 minute break to do nothing but relax and give my brain a rest was almost impossible. The panicky thoughts would come flooding in about how much work I had to do and who I was letting down by just sitting there not doing anything.
But I found that by really making an effort to persist, and telling myself that I not only deserved this rest but it was completely necessary, it did get easier. Then just like with physical exercise, all of a sudden you start to feel the results! You start to realise that life isn't going to come crashing down around you just because you took a few minutes out to rest or to do some feel-good exercise, or because you treated yourself for a change instead of thinking about everyone else.
One thing I find really useful is to have a written reminder of things I need to try to do every day if I want be happier and more relaxed. I've even signed my list as it felt like more of a pledge, or in other words a commitment to sticking to the things on my list.
However, this isn't about being too regimented and always doing everything - we're all only human after all! It's just about having a daily reminder of things that can help ease feelings of anxiety, stress or feeling down.
As a help to you, I've put my list into a downloadable format - just click on the image below.
I've got mine printed and framed next to my bed, but you can do as you wish with yours - maybe have it folded in your bag to pull out throughout the day, have it as a screensaver on your laptop, or even have it pinned up in the kitchen... It's totally up to you! Or perhaps your happiness pledge is a bit different to mine, in which case you might enjoy writing up your own to keep safe and refer to.
I'd love to hear your thoughts about whether you've found this download useful, or whether you have other little tips and tricks that I could try too. As ever, feel free to comment below or email me at email@example.com.
And for more helpful tips and ways to support happiness and wellbeing at home, you can join our community here.
Love from Amy xx
Amy Lauder is the Founder of Zenhance Your Home