Health Advocate Blog

This month, make time to focus on your mental health

Many people may seem to handle their work, family duties and other day-to-day activities well, but inside they’re feeling anxious, sad, stuck, or lonely. Acknowledging these feelings and making your mental health a priority can help you feel happier and more fulfilled in life.

In honor of May being Mental Health Awareness Month, we’re offering some tips and resources to help you move from “just getting by” to feeling happier, hopeful, and more connected.

Try these tips:

Prioritize self-care by engaging in activities that nurture your well-being, like practicing mindfulness, setting boundaries, and seeking support when needed.

Keep your mind occupied. Participate in a hobby, read a book, learn a new skill, listen to music—anything to stimulate your brain.

Make exercise a habit. Regular physical activity can enhance both your mental and physical health.

Strive for better sleep. Getting adequate sleep is crucial for maintaining overall well-being and stable moods.

Eat nutritious (and delicious!) foods. A balanced diet is essential to provide the right fuel for your body and mind.

Maintain and strengthen relationships. Building strong social connections can boost emotional resilience and ensure that you have valuable support.

Plan stress-free activities to enjoy during your downtime. If you like reading, working on a hobby, going on walks, or trying new restaurants, build those things into your free time. In addition, incorporating relaxation practices—like meditation or journaling—into your routine can help reduce stress and improve mental focus.

Consider what makes you feel anxious, sad, or lonely, and avoid it. For example, being mindful of negative news exposure or curtailing your social media use may help you protect your mental health.

Rethink your drinking habits. Limiting or avoiding alcohol can help prevent negative impacts on your mood and mental well-being.

Pay close attention to symptoms. Consistently feeling sad, irritable, or hopeless could be depression. The difference between depression and feeling down is how severe the symptoms are and how long they last.

Know that anxiety, depression, and other mental health issues are treatable. Counseling, medication, and/or lifestyle changes could make all the difference in your life. And remember, seeking help is not a sign of weakness—it’s a sign of strength.

Are you or a loved one at risk for depression? Download and print this assessment and find out.

And check out these articles:

Building your self-care toolbox

Feeling down? Know when to get help

How to overcome burnout

Inhale calm, exhale stress

Know your triggers

Men and mental health: What you should know

Feeling like you can’t cope with life?

The importance of winding down

Take more nature breaks for better health

Coping with the anniversary of a traumatic event

Exercise for focus, moods, and more

Protect your child’s mental well-being

Coping during times of extreme stress

Need more help?

If feelings of depression, anxiety, and other mental health challenges persist and won’t go away, it may be time for you to seek additional help. Talking to a licensed counselor, who can provide confidential support for emotional, family and work issues, can make all the difference to help you regain better well-being.