A concise series of steps for dealing with the core aspects of mental distress.
Stressed, anxious, worried or afraid?
Most of us feel like this from time to time. We may also have experiences that are very difficult to cope with. Losing someone you love or a relationship breaking up, being bullied, losing your job, sexual or racial harassment, or experiencing discrimination because of a mental health problem. Not having a voice because you’re too young, too old or simply different. Doing something positive can make all the difference – for you and others.
Accepting who you are
Our beliefs, background, religion, race, gender and sexuality make us who we are. Everyone is entitled to respect, including you. We all have something to offer.
Regular exercise can really help if you’re feeling depressed, stressed or anxious. It can give you more energy too. Find something you enjoy – sport, swimming, walking, dancing or cycling and then just do it.
Doing something creative
All kinds of creative things can help if you are anxious or low. They can also increase your confidence. Music, writing, painting, poetry, cooking, gardening – experiment to find something that suits you.
Learning new skills
Learning a new skill can increase your confidence – whether it’s for pleasure, to make new friends or to improve your chances of a job. Trying new things can make you feel good about yourself too.
Meeting new people and getting involved in things can make all the difference – for you and for others. You can support others and feel supported too.
Try and make time for yourself. Fit things into your day that help you unwind – listening to music, reading, praying or meditating – find something you will enjoy and that works for you.
Having a balanced diet will not only help the way that you feel but also the way that you think. Try to eat regularly and remember your five daily portions of fresh fruit and vegetables.
Asking for help
Everyone needs help from time to time. It’s ok to ask for help, even though it feels difficult sometimes – whether it’s from friends and family, or from your doctor, local support group or a helpline.
Talking about it
Most people feel isolated and overwhelmed by their problems sometimes. It can help to share your feelings. If you feel there is no one to talk to, you could try a helpline.
Drinking alcohol to deal with problems will only make things worse. It’s best to drink in moderation and to avoid binges too.
Try not to be too hard on yourself. We can all have difficult days from time to time and we all cope with things differently. There is no right or wrong way of dealing with life and what it may throw at you. Every day we cope with something different.
Staying in touch with friends
You don’t have to be strong and struggle on alone. Friends are important especially at difficult times. Keep in touch.