TEN TIPS TO PROMOTE POSITIVE MENTAL WELL-BEING

Mental Health is just as important as physical health, but it is often overlooked. Although we are quick to notice a physical pain, we don’t often take notice of how we are feeling every day. Mental well-being is important for everyone. It affects how we treat ourselves, treat the people around us and what we are motivated to accomplish every day. We can all make small changes to promote positive mental well-being.

I have put together ten tips, which I personally believe can positively influence the way you feel:

  1. Surround yourself with positive people.

I believe that the people you spend your time with influences your mood. Positive energy makes you feel good. Negative energy can get you down without you realising. It might be scary to distance yourself from certain people, but doing so could positively influence how you feel.

2.  Eat a balanced diet.

Eating healthy foods can also influence your mood. This includes eating fruit, vegetables and fibre. I believe in the 80/20 rule. Eat a balanced diet, but also treat yourself and listen to what your body craves.

3. Take a walk.

This could be in the morning before work, during your lunch break or in the evening. Walking gives you a chance to clear your mind and surround yourself in nature. As humans, we spend so much of our time indoors. Going outside for a while could be a healthy habit you incorporate into your day.

4. Sleep.

Research suggests that sleep has a major influence on mood. It is recommended that we sleep for 6-8 hours a night. Sleeping well will motivate you to accomplish more the next day, and make you feel happier in general!*

*Switch off all technology at least 1 hour before you sleep (these lights can affect circadian rhythms)- read a book/meditate/listen to music instead!

5. Tidy-up.

Keeping things tidy can make life seem a lot less stressful. ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up’ by Marie Kondo is an amazing book to read if you want to de-clutter your life and never look back. Alternatively, at the end of each day, tidy up things you left scattered about so you can get on with your day without feeling stressed the next morning.

6. Talk to someone.

If you’re not feeling quite yourself, talk to a friend. A problem shared is a problem halved. Sometimes we keep so much to ourselves, the problem seems a lot bigger than it really is. You can gain incredible advice from other people, and they may have experienced something similar to you.  

7. Exercise.

Exercising releases endorphins (the happy hormone), so although finding the motivation to exercise can be challenging, the feeling after you have completed a workout is always worth it! Do something you enjoy, whether that’s running, yoga or dance. Joining clubs or societies is also a great way to meet like-minded people.

8. Write a list.

Sometimes it feels like we have so much going on, we don’t know where to start. Write down a list of everything you have to do and any worries you have. Seeing things in front of you will make things a lot clearer and you’ll be able to accomplish more. I also recommend writing a To Do list every evening so you can be productive the next morning.

9. Plan things to look forward to.

This could include scheduling in a break in the week to do something you enjoy (going to a café, meeting with friends or a phone call). Don’t make yourself so busy you don’t have time to do things you enjoy. Taking a day off can give you more space in your mind.

10. Take time off social media.

This can cause unnecessary stress through comparison. Talking to distant friends may bring you happiness, but scrolling for 3 hours won’t. Put down your phone and read a book instead 😊

There are so many more tips I could include which promote positive wellbeing. I’d be interested in hearing your thoughts…

Thank you for reading,

Emily x

TOP TEN TIPS FOR REDUCING PLASTIC CONSUMPTION

The environmental impact of plastic waste has become very clear in the last few months. Single-use plastic is causing serious problems, such as harming wildlife and polluting the ocean. It can feel impossible to tackle such a big issue on an individual scale. However, I have put together ten simple tips for reducing plastic consumption in your life…

  1. Use a Coffee Cup

Coffee is a go-to people living a busy lifestyle. Single-use coffee cups can contain plastic, making them non-recyclable. Many coffee shops now offer a discount on hot drinks when you bring your reusable cup along. Therefore, bringing a coffee cup with you will not only prevent waste, but save you some money.

2. Buy a reusable bag

Bringing a reusable bag with you into University, work or town is another environmentally friendly habit. These can be purchased from numerous supermarkets, or you could simply bring a bag from home. Not only does this prevent you from paying 5p for plastic bags every time you shop, you can also carry more!

3. Ditch plastic cutlery

If you buy ready meals on-the-go or often get take-away, this can often come with plastic cutlery. If there is an option, choose wooden cutlery. Alternatively, you could bring your own metal cutlery wrapped in a small towel.

4. Bring a lunch box

When travelling, it can be easier to buy food. However, this is often contained in plastic packaging. Making meals at home and bringing leftovers with you avoids plastic consumption and is also a good way to save money!

5. Metal Straws

Everyone loves to use a straw when enjoying drinks. A metal straw is an amazing alternative to plastic ones. You can buy them online in bulk or at marketplaces. They are ideal for birthday presents and Christmas gifts. I find my flatmates always trying to steal mine, now that I no longer let them buy the plastic variety…

6. Reusable Bottle

It is easy to grab a bottle of water in a corner shop or on campus when you are thirsty. Another way to reduce plastic consumption is to purchase a reusable water bottle. The metal variety (such as Chile bottles) are especially popular at the moment. Fill them up before you leave the house and refill when you find a water station (or alternatively ask a café to do so). You’ll never have to buy a plastic bottle again!

7. Reusable Cotton Pads

This may be a strange one to consider, but also do-able. Some cotton pads contain plastic. Moreover, packaging for them is often plastic. I recently discovered reusable cotton pads, which work in exactly the same way as single-use pads but can be used more than once. They are also machine washable. Try something new and give it a go!

8. Zero waste beauty products

Finding products such as shampoo, conditioner and shower gel can be tough one when trying to reduce plastic. However, ‘Lush’ offer amazing products that come loose and work just as well. They have an amazing variety of products, which I have heard last longer than products contained in plastic packaging.

9. Choose paper bags over plastic in supermarkets.

Often when buying fruit and vegetables from the supermarket, they are contained in unnecessary plastic packaging. My top tip is to avoid this and choose loose products. However, if you go to the mushroom section, you will find paper bags- use these instead! Alternatively, place bananas in your trolley loose.

10. Use a Menstrual Cup

Warning males! But there are so many options for sustainable feminine care. These include tampons and sanitary wear made of bamboo. Alternatively, menstrual cups, which can be used time and time again.

If you’d like some more tips for living a more sustainable lifestyle, join the discussion on the closed Facebook Group, ‘Living Consciously Crew’, created by lifestyle and fitness blogger and YouTuber, Zanna Van Dijk

Thank you for reading my first blog post. Good luck with reducing plastic in your life! I’d be interested to hear your thoughts…

Emily x