What they say is true: Our mental health is just as important as our physical health. When you feel burned out or just tired and are at your wit’s end, it’s hard to focus and be productive. It’s also hard to enjoy things when you feel down all the time, stressed over the things that have to be done or feeling bogged down by all your other issues in life.
While we don’t really have a choice but to toughen up and face our problems, it’s also a good idea to take breaks and recharge before we face our demons. Let your boss know you’re taking a day off and using this necessary mental health day to slow down. Here are 5 tips on how you can make the most of it.
Go for a run or hit the gym
Moving will help your body produce your much-needed happy chemicals, giving you a clearer headspace to get through the day. If you have also been putting off your workout for a while, taking this first step will be a great way to jumpstart the habit.
Put your phone in airplane mode
Inform your friends, family, and workmates that you are taking a break and then put your phone in airplane mode for at least an hour or two. Whether we admit it or not, social media and the ease of connecting with others can sometimes be distracting. Notifications every two minutes, new messages and e-mails that demand a reply — the pressure to get back and get on track with everything can sometimes be stressful. Take a pause from the screen and just give yourself a few hours to focus on doing other things. We promise you, the objects of your FOMO are not real. And you can always get back to your messages and notifications later anyway.
Make time for the things that you usually don’t have the time for
Instead of sleeping in on your designated “mental health day,” get up on time like you usually do and take the free time to indulge yourself. Make that french toast, press yourself a good coffee, and pick up your book that has collected dust on your bedside table. Do the things that you promise yourself to do when you “have the time.” While lying down in your bed all day might sound appealing, it’s also good to do something else and revel in other things that you want to do (aside from being lazy in bed).
When you have a break, it’s easy to fall into the Netflix and YouTube rabbit hole. Make use of your mental health day as a day to refresh the mind, and that means breaking away from your mindless habits in favor of more fruitful activities. Go out, bask in the sunshine, sit at a local coffee shop, or take a leisurely walk in your neighborhood. Get out of your usual routine and take a refresher by just being present somewhere else.
Meet with friends or spend the day with your loved ones
A mental health break is all about doing things that will feed your soul. Socializing with people who matter is always a great way to blow off some steam and relax. If meeting with friends or spending a day with your loved ones helps you restore your dwindling energies, then, by all means, go ahead. Take this time to bond and enjoy some quality time with people who make you happy.