Self Care is Not Selfish (Part 2)

By Diana Lopez

Part 2Apr 15 2022

selfcare-part2

Social Relationships

Creating positive relationships is essential for maintaining emotional balance, while social isolation and a lack of relationship skills can contribute to conditions like anxiety and depression. The key to building strong relationships is clear and open communication, whether that’s sharing your thoughts with friends or trusted colleagues. If you’re struggling to open up, don’t worry! There are plenty of resources available to help you develop these skills and connect with others. Everyone can learn and grow, so don’t let fear hold you back from building the relationships you deserve.

And did you know that having strong relationships is just as vital to your well-being as a well-balanced diet? It’s true! Research shows that emotional stability is closely linked to having a supportive network of friends and family that you can both laugh with and lean on during tough times. But in today’s fast-paced world, it’s easy to lose touch with those who matter most. That’s why it’s crucial to make a conscious effort to stay connected – the payoff is huge! So why not pick up the phone and reach out to that friend you haven’t spoken to in a while? You never know the positive impact it might have on both of you.

Easy and practical tools for socialising:

  • Call a friend or family member for a chat or arrange a catch-up whenever is possible
  • If you don’t feel that you have anyone to call, reach out to acquaintances or neighbours or community groups
  • Spend less time in front of the TV or computer screen
  • Join networking, social, or special interest community groups that meet on a regular basis
  • Take your children or pets to the park
  • Consider volunteering, give you the opportunity to help others, can boost your self-esteem, and is a great way to meet new people

Thoughts

Let’s face it, we all have our moments when our thoughts and actions are less than productive. But fear not! Studies have shown that therapy can be a powerful tool in helping us manage and change our less-than-ideal tendencies. By recognizing that we can shift from negative or unhelpful behaviours to more positive and problem-solving approaches, we can start living our best lives. So, let’s find a great therapist and start the journey towards a happier and healthier existence!

Easy and practical tools for helpful thoughts:

  • A useful way to learn the connection between our thoughts and the way we feel is to take notes after stressful situations: What happened? Where? Who was involved? When? What were you feeling? How strong was your mood? (0-10). What was going through your mind?
  • Sometimes the way we think (thinking traps) or talk to ourselves is negative or unhelpful.
  • Ask yourself these questions: If a close friend or someone I loved was thinking this way, what would I tell them? Five years from now when I look back will I see things differently? Are the things I’m jumping to conclusions about justified by the evidence?  – Then write alternative, balanced thoughts that could have been more helpful.
    – Rate your moods again after practising helpful thoughts.

Mindfulness

Mindfulness exercises might just be part of the solution you need! These exercises help you stay in touch with the present, allowing you to manage distressing memories and reduce anxiety about the future. And guess what? You can access various apps and programs for free to get started! Additionally, creating an emotional balance and well-being plan is an easy tool to ensure you stay on track. You can even share it with a close friend or your manager! The power to create and implement your plan is all in your hands. Let’s start prioritizing our mental health and well-being!

Note: It’s important to take care of yourself both physically and mentally. If you’re experiencing changes in your thoughts, feelings or behaviours that are starting to affect your work or personal life, please reach out for professional help. Left untreated, prolonged stress can lead to bigger issues like depression or anxiety. Remember, the earlier you seek support, the sooner you can take control of your life and move forward. Stay healthy and take care!

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