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    How to have good mental health

    There are lots of different ways to deal with how you are feeling. Maybe not all of these coping strategies will work for you, but it is good to try them and find the ones that work for you

    Things you can do every day:

    • Set aside time for you – Include rest and relaxation in your daily schedule
    • Do something you enjoy every day – Make time for leisure activities that bring you joy
    • Take up a relaxation practice – Relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises activate the body’s relaxation response
    • Eat a balanced diet  You need all the nutrients and vitamins to help your brain function 100% 
    • Get a healthy amount of sleep  The recommended amount of sleep you need each night is 8-10 hours: This allows your brain to rest and recharge for the next day 
    • Keep Active  When you exercise, hormones called endorphins are released in your brain, they are natural “Feel good” chemicals. Endorphins can also help boost your self-esteem 
    • Talk about your feelings  Bottling up feelings is not healthy and can cause stress. Talking to somebody is an easy way to help manage your stress levels 
    • Hobbies  It is important to have a hobby that you enjoy. It is good to make sure you have some “me time”. Hobbies are also a great way to take your mind off any stressful situations you might be going through 
    • Clean your room  Having a clean room can boost your emotional wellbeing and you can also get a sense of achievement once you have finished 

    When things start to get difficult:

    • Keep a diary/mood diary 
    • Try and do something you enjoy 
    • Listen to music 
    • Exercise 
    • Try to socialise with family and friends 
    • Break down your day into smaller achievable tasks 
    • Breathe in slowly, pulling your stomach in and then breathe out, slowly pushing your stomach out 
    • If tense wiggle your toes (No one can see! = Bonus) 
    • Meditate 
    • Squeeze something like a stress ball or use a fidget toy 
    • Avoid energy drinks and caffeine 
    • Take a nap – Everything is better after a rest 
    • Go for a walk – Fresh air is always nice 
    • Do some art activities/colouring 
    • Grounding techniques – 5 Things you can see, 4 things you can hear, 3 things you can touch, 2 things you can smell – Take 1 deep breath and – RELAX 

    These are just some ideas, everyone has their own unique ways of dealing with negative feelings.  Spend some time working out what is the best way for you.

    Written by: Georgia Kinsella

    Senior Childrens Rights and Participation Assistant