Mental Health & Stress...

Updated: Aug 20

Make your Mental Health a priority


May is 'Mental Health Awareness Month' its something that is very close to me, as you know I suffer with BPD (Borderline Personality Disorder) Stress & Anxiety is a BIG issue in my lifestyle.




There is so much stigma regarding Mental Health, however it's becoming more recognised in the media and in society today. I personally think more people should TALK about their mental health. Many people today in society suffer in silence and feel like they are alone....Your NOT alone. Talking to someone, a friend, family, someone professional can help you manage your mental health. It's NOT a cure, it's simply to learn how to cope, how to train your mind to deal with the situation rather than spiral into this 'darkness' as I call it.


I have had professional help, I had a psychiatrist & Psychologist. I've now been discharged probably about a year now. Is it hard?...course it is. I asked my psychologist "what do I do if I struggle?" my psychologist said..."its okay if you struggle, you have to remember you are only human and the trick is to acknowledge the emotion, deal with it & move on" I looked at the floor deep in thought thinking, how on earth do I do this! Since I have been discharged, I have had relapses, I have crashed, but I've dealt with the situations better. That to me, is AMAZING in itself xx


I struggle a lot with body image, stress & anxiety. I know there are a lot of people who are in the same boat as I am and feel like they can't share their feelings. Over the years I didn't think that much of stress, but now that i'm researching more into mental health, I now understand that stress is surprisingly a BIG factor in mental heath.



I wanted to share this video to highlight how STRESS can cause many issues not just physically but emotionally and mentally.

Courtesy of; www.mentalhealth.org.uk




What is stress?

85% of the UK population experience stress regularly and whether the stress is caused by money, work or relationship issues, it has a huge and detrimental effect on our physical and mental health. When stress gets out of control ... the consequences can be serious.


Stress can be a key cause of anxiety and depression and is sometimes linked to self-harm and suicide. It can also have serious physical impacts. Stress can increase the risk of heart disease. It can affect our ability to get to sleep and stay asleep. It is linked to muscle pain, and can damage our immune system....We know we are too stressed, too often.


How STRESSED are you right now?


Please follow the link below to take the STRESS test, you be surprised.


https://www.bemindfulonline.com/test-your-stress/



Physical stress may be the result of too much to do, not enough sleep, a poor diet or the effects of an illness,  however stress can also be mental: when you worry about money, a loved one’s illness, retirement, or experience an emotionally devastating event, such as the death in the family or being fired from work and frustratingly both physical and mental symptoms are not always obvious to us.


 In response to these daily strains  the body automatically increases blood pressure, heart rate, respiration, metabolism, and blood flow to the muscles. This response, is intended to help the  body react quickly and effectively to a high-pressure situation.


Stress is known to be the main cause for various sleep disorders, including insomnia but it can also cause backaches or headaches, and can contribute to potentially life-threatening diseases like high blood pressure and heart disease. As well as the physical effects it has on the body  it also contributes to the way we behave and our mood.  Anxiety, restlessness, irritability, lack of focus, sadness and depression can be experienced whilst we may encounter over eating/under eating, angry outbursts, drugs / alcohol abuse and social withdrawal. 


Either way it doesn't paint a pretty picture.  So read on to find some handy hints on how to help:


Ways to combat STRESS?




De-clutter your life

Its easy to become so weighed down by too much "stuff" and having a good clear out at home of excess junk can also help the mind become mentally free.  Focus on Sleep

If you think you’re one of the many people who isn’t getting enough sleep, make an effort to increase the length of time you sleep and improve your sleep quality. Going to bed earlier is a great start (try setting a bedtime alarm to remind you) but it’s also helpful to start winding down in the evenings well before bedtime with a relaxing evening routine. Smartphones and other electronic devices can also have a negative impact on sleep quality – ban them from the bedroom and make it one of your resolutions to stop using your phone at least an hour before bedtime.


Start a Meditation and Mindfulness Habit

Meditation is an easy way to improve your mental health -  even five minutes of meditation a day can make a big difference.  Mindfulness meditation (a type of meditation where you focus on the current moment instead of dwelling on the past or stressing about the future) has been shown to be helpful for those dealing with anxiety, depression, and stress.  


Eat Better

Its a proven fact that people who consume more fruits and vegetables have lower levels of depression than those who eat less fruit and vegetables. Nutritional improvements over time (a balance of vegetables, fruits, grains and proteins) can improve your mental health and quality of life and eating leafy greens and vegetables in the broccoli family (cabbage, cauliflower, kale) is also key.

Get Moving

Physical and mental health work hand in hand  and the mind and body should not be considered separate entities. Exercise causes the body to release feel-good chemicals into the bloodstream, which provide an instant mood boost. Something as simple as a ten-minute walk can help to get those endorphins flowing. Exercising outdoors, also gives an extra mental health boost  from spending time in nature.

New Hobbies

Focus on taking up a new hobby or activity.  Join a new class or group.  Making new social connections improves mental health and helps reduce depression and anxiety. Start a gratitude journal.   Starting a daily habit of writing down things you are grateful for helps boost your mental well-being. Finally if time is tight and you don't want to take on any new hobbies, then buy yourself an adult colouring book.  Guaranteed to reduce phone and TV screen time and will help you de-stress.


** Please TALK to Someone, put your mental health first **



Some useful links:

If you need mental health information and our helplines are closed, please visit our Mental health A-Z or contact NHS 111.


For a listening ear or just someone to talk to the Samaritans are open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can call them on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org


https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/helplines/


Thank you :)


XX LOVE YOURSELF XX