Tag Archives: self care

The jungle path

It might be a cliche but I quite like comparing creating a path through the jungle to our mental health.

Actual paths are created in our brains when we do something over and over again so when we try to change something, we are literally creating a new path. Fits in quite well with the jungle path, don’t you think? (Something about neurotransmitters or neurons …need to research this a bit more but I am more about the emotion than the practical side of things!)

If I imagine us standing in the jungle, knowing where we want to get to but there isn’t a path, we need to create one. Where do we start?

We’d need the right gear first – are we suitably dressed? Shorts when we know there are stinging nettles? Maybe not.
Are we setting off on this journey keeping ourselves safe from harm?

Tools; What would we need to clear things away? It might be painful to just use our hands to pull things down. What about cutting stuff away?
Are we using the right tool for the right job? And are we in the right mindset?

Self care; This applies to both the real world and the analogy, are we drinking, eating and resting enough to keep ensure we are able to do this job? Something we all too often over look when embarking on big changes. Actually, maybe the first thing that goes!

Can you think of anything to add? Trying to change things is not easy but it CAN be done. Maybe look at it as you are trying to create a new path in the jungle, maybe that will take the overwhelm away and help you to see things in a new light.

And if you need help, you know where I am <3

Time for you

Image result for time for you

In recovering from my own depression and seeing clients taking this on, has proven to me this is an essential part of maintaining good mental health. All too often we are so busy doing things for everyone else, we forget to look after ourselves. We all work so very hard all year then maybe, if you’re really lucky, you get 2 weeks a year off.
I’m going to suggest a new way of being if you’re up for it;

How about having a little ‘holiday’ every day?

Can you even imagine that? Resting when you need to, doing something fun every day, creating a life that you actually want and makes you feel amazing in yourself. Doesn’t that sound lovely?

All this can be achieved from simple time management.
Maybe you are already really organised but have you allocated time just for you? As in actually blocked out time, like a doctor’s or midwife’s appointment? An appointment for you?
If you create space to spend time just with yourself, you will be able to stop, breathe and look at the bigger picture of your life.

Are your needs being met? If not, which ones are not and what can you do about it?
Are you getting enough rest? Especially important if baby keeps waking you in the night. Also, don’t forget, we need more rest at a time of change / transition as we are learning new things and our brains are working harder as you think about new things and take them on.
Are you playing enough? Are you doing things that keep you, YOU? What fun things can you do, by yourself and with baby (then maybe with other loved ones)

Use a diary and block time out when you need or want to do things.
If you get overwhelmed at the amount of things you have in one day; spread it out over the week. Still overwhelmed, spread it over the month. Ideally, just have one ‘thing’ to do a day and you can build on it. Remember not to beat yourself up if you achieve nothing. Self compassion, remember!

You will not forget appointments this way, you will take away that feeling of not having enough time, of not having enough hours in the day. Instead, this will help you feel calmer and actually show you how much you are coping with and managing.

By managing your time, YOU can create the life you want. YOU book in what you need, YOU can say no to things that do not serve you.
YOU are in charge of your thoughts and feelings, your actions, your appointments. Your appointments in  your diary will show you what you are giving time to, what you are seeing as a priority and stop the feelings of overwhelm, anxiety and get rid of that ‘I don’t have the time!!’ feeling.

5 a Day for Good Mental Health

“I don’t know how to deal with mental health”

Hands up who feels like this? Mental health is scary, right? We hear of stories of someone with Mental health issues shooting people, maybe stabbing their partners, or suffocating their babies.

These are extremes but these are also the examples we are given of what Mental health is. So when we are faced with anything concerning Mental health, for many of us, there is a stigma attached, from society and from ourselves.

We’re not as bad as the stories we hear, so we don’t seek support or help. I have to say, awareness is growing and part of my work is to raise this awareness.

First step is to be aware that we ALL have mental health, just as we have physical health. And just like physical health, we can have good and bad mental health.

We know a lot about physical health; what to eat, how to look after ourselves and we do things everyday to keep our physical health good like brushing our teeth. Look around you though, not everyone is at their peak physical health are they? There are differences, because we are all different. There are different levels because we all have different abilities. The same can be said for mental health.

We are all at different places with our mental health; some of us can bounce back from a crisis, some cope under pressure, some take changes in their stride, some are very positive. The majority of us though, I suspect, struggle a little every day but do not feel the need for support because this is how it’s always been.

For healthier Mental Health, let’s start doing a little bit everyday; just like we do with our physical health (brushing our teeth, combing our hair, showering etc). I want us to start looking after our mental health.

The way I see it, if we found a lump; we’d be straight at the doctors. We wouldn’t wait until it was stage 4 cancer, would we? So why do we do this with our mental health? We wait until we are at crisis point before we seek help. This does not have to happen and we can start by simply getting into good daily practices.

As part of raising awareness and improving your mental health, I have put together a chart, just for mental health: Your 5 a Day for Good Mental Health. Please feel free to download your very own copy and start filling it in today – you can write a word a day, or use it as a guide for your journaling.

Please share with friends and family and help improve everyone’s Mental health 🙂




Be Selfish

Yes, that right, I said selfish. Now this word has been used in a negative way for such a long time, I want to give it a new identity.

Think of the safety advice you get when you are on an aeroplane if there is an emergency;
“Put on your oxygen mask on first before you help others”.
Well, you wouldn’t be much use to anyone trying to put a mask on them if you are passed out now, are you?

Same goes for life. If you are running around caring for everyone else and keep putting your needs last, what is going to happen to you? If you are doing so much that you are constantly anxious and exhausted, something has got to give. Do you really want the thing to give out to be you? Then who will care for those around you?

Being selfish means taking time out to recharge, to fill your cup, to breathe in that oxygen and fill your lungs. Being selfish means you are in a much better place to be able to be there for others from a place of love and giving rather than exhaustion and resentment.

So have a think about what recharges you, what do you do that looses time where you are having fun and reconnecting with your inner self?

I’ve had a mix of examples for this;
having a candle lit bubble bath with loud music
going for a walk
playing a game
sitting doing nothing

What do you want to do that you have been wanting to do for ages but have never allowed yourself to do? I now give you permission if you need it.

You are allowed to put yourself first. Actually, you HAVE to put yourself first if you want to be happy. Oh, and a bonus of doing this exercise? In being happier, you will find others around you will be happier too.

Self Compasssion

From a young age we are taught to think of others and to be kind. Has anyone ever taught you to do this for yourself? I bet you that you are the kind of person who puts everyone else’s needs above yours, that you are so kind and caring everyone comes to you for help. I bet you encourage those around you and build them up when they are down.

In the same breath though, I bet you don’t do any of these things for yourself, do you? I bet you are pretty hard on yourself and you are always telling yourself off, right? Your self talk is very negative and you put yourself in your place;

“I should know better!!!”
“I am so pathetic”
“I’m such a looser”
“[add what you say to yourself]”

Why on earth do we do this to ourselves? Why do we think everyone else is more worthy, more able, more capable, better, wiser, MORE.

Well, this stops today!!!! From when you read this email, you will change things because my dear friend, you are worthy, capable, better, wiser and ENOUGH.

Trust me, I know 😀

So where does self compassion come in?

The easiest way I describe it for it to really work is to imagine your best friend or child or person you love and give so much to is going through what you are.

What would you say to them?
How would you help them?
How would you be with them?
Talk to them?

Act towards yourself as you would towards them.
Talk to yourself as lovingly and caringly as you would talk to them.
Be with yourself as you would be with them.
Use positive and encouraging words to yourself as you would them.

Does that make sense?

It really is that simple.

By doing this, you will start to learn to accept yourself and if you don’t, in time you will start to like yourself.
You will build your self worth and grow in self esteem and confidence.
You will not feel lonely because your best friend is right there within you.
You will always feel loved.
You will be comforted.
You will always feel like you belong.

Now that sounds like a step towards happiness, don’t you think?