We’ve been locked in and cooped up for a while. Hopefully you’ve managed to get out for a little bit of exercise to maintain your physical health. But the last few months have been really trying especially when it comes to your mental health.

Mental health is quite easy to overlook. When it comes to physical health, the key indicators that something isn’t okay are usually a bit more obvious. Unfortunately, mental health issues can be harder to detect. So if you think you’re struggling, reach out to mind.co.uk or check the NHS website for something more relevant to you.

Here are some ways you can improve your mental health.

Community

Everyone needs a strong sense of personal community around them, a network of people who can be there. Sometimes it’s nice to have someone who will reach out to you and you can have a cop of tea and a chat and forget about your worries for a little while.

Sometimes these acts can be very simple. A lot of us are working from home now and getting very little face to face interaction, so rather than sending an email, try a video call, have a chat with your colleague rather than just reading a message. Connect with an old friend or someone you might have lost touch with just to check in on them and see if they’re okay.

Physical

We’ve all been locked in for a while, working at our desks, unable to visit the gym or go for a swim. We’re comfort eating and we’re all out of our healthy routine. But it’s time to re-evaluate yourself and your surroundings. No more ‘I’ll just wait for the gym to re-open’, the time is now.

Start small, nobody is suggesting you run a marathon. A nice walk will get the heart beating and make you feel much fresher and more upbeat. Do some easy exercises in your home with some fantastic resources available on YouTube for simple home workouts.

Clear Space

It’s sort of true what they say. Messy room = messy life. Some of the best feelings in the world are cleaning your house or changing your bed sheets.

This is more than just clearing up your messy bedroom though. Allow some time to reevaluate your life. Maybe your desk is in a dark corner and you’d really benefit from more natural light? Maybe you could try a new recipe that you’ve never tried before. Spruce up your environment, add a lamp or a new plant. Maybe, if you’re feeling really adventurous, a lick of paint.

Grow

It’s important during this time to not limit yourself. It’s very easy to get set into a routine especially while homeworking. Logging in at this time, logging off at that time, eat, Netflix, bed.

Try and break this cycle. Take up a new hobby, learn a new language, read a new book. These are just some of the ways you can keep your brain active.

Wider community

This is more about what you can do for others. There is a lot going on in the world right now. It’s scary out there. But if you’re able to and it’s safe to do so, you should look at where you can help in your community. This will give you a great sense of purpose and meaning. The ability to help other people is such a great feeling and will do wonders for you. There are all sorts of projects going on right now from foodbanks to deliveries to the elderly and vulnerable.

Hopefully these tips will help you boost your mental health but please do ask for help if you feel like you are struggling.