16 May 2019

Lawrence Jones sport and business - mental healthThis week is Mental Health Awareness Week. Whilst we should, undoubtedly, be looking after our mental health and wellbeing, this week provides an opportunity to check in with ourselves

Often with the growing demands of work, or changes in our personal lives, pressure and stress build without us realising. We stop doing the things that keep us mentally healthy, like taking time to exercise or read, spending times with friends or truly switching off.

I call these black-hole moments. Even though we may know that something is an essential part of the formula to keep us healthy, we stop doing it. It falls into a black hole.

So, this Mental Health Awareness Week, why not ask yourself what you’ve stopped doing and the impact of that.

For me, it’s exercise. I play squash twice a week, train with a trainer twice a week and anything else that I can fit in. I know that without this, I don’t feel my best. I also take time out playing chess online. Every morning I get up early and take a moment to play a game of chess.

That’s my formula, what’s yours?

Time for yourself

You may be thinking that you don’t have the time to take for yourself. I may have an answer to that. Scheduling. When we say that we are going to do something, we may or may not do it. Chances are you’ll forget. I know I would! However, if you schedule it, book it into the diary, you make a commitment. You’re making that time and committing to it. When you do this, you’re 99% more likely to do it.

So why not choose a time, at the start of the day perhaps, to take time for yourself. A moment to do something that you enjoy, that’s just for you. A time to switch off, to clear your mind, and be free from the pressures that we all inevitably have each day.

Life is all about balance. When you strike the right balance, you’re much more likely to maintain a better overall health – both mental and physical. You’re also better prepared for the times when mental health struggles arise.

Whatever you do for the rest of the week, make sure you take a moment for yourself.

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