Making Mental Health Matter This Summer
By Brandi Goodman
Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, usually affects people in the winter months when the weather is cold, no one's getting outside as much, and the sun stays away. The disorder can impact some in the summer as well. You may feel yourself falling into a depression as you watch others having fun while you're stuck at work or too broke to go and do anything. Make your mental health matter this summer by keeping some tips in mind.
Take a Vacation or Plan a Staycation
If you have the funds, take a vacation. It can be great for your mental health to get away from it all. You don't have to go to a different state to do so. Just one night away at an inexpensive hotel can be all it takes to lift your spirits. If you really can't afford it, plan a staycation instead. Pitch a tent in your backyard and feel like you're camping. Make a few changes to your house, such as switching up the curtains and bedding, and feel like you're staying somewhere different.
Use Your Vacation Time for Self-Care
Even if you don't plan on going on vacation, you should still use your vacation time. When you're really feeling down, take a day or two off and use the time for self-care. Too many people think if they're home they should be getting projects done, such as tackling that pile of laundry or fixing something that needs repair. If you don't have the mental capacity to tackle the job, then don't. Read a book you've been meaning to or lay out and get some sun. A day off can be spent helping yourself feel better and resetting your mind. It's great for stress.
Exercise releases endorphins that can boost your mood. Being outdoors is also a mood-enhancer. Exercise outside and you'll be even more likely to experience an increase in good feelings and a reduction in stress. A simple walk through a park can help you see the beauty around you and ease your anxious feelings. Join an outdoor yoga class and socialize with others. Go for a swim. There's plenty of summer exercise options.
Make your mental health matter this summer -- and always. Your mental health should always be a priority. Take the time you need to get your mind right and help yourself reduce the stress and anxiousness you're feeling. If you still need help, seek the guidance of a professional.
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