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How to prepare for Blue Monday

Allegedly, next Monday is the most depressing day of the year. Across the county, we help people manage their mental health, but there are a few things you can do to help yourself.

Physical activity

Getting outdoors and undertaking exercises like cycling, walking or jogging, can be as effective but if running in winter isn’t for you, activities such as Zumba, dance classes and even trapeze classes have been shown to have many positive benefits for people’s mental health. We have a number of ways to get outdoors and activities – everything from volunteering to support the environment to taking part in challenge events.

Set a realistic resolution

Setting goals can be a helpful way to provide structure in your life and to show the progress you have made, but they need to be manageable and achievable.

Get creative

Getting creative can help you to switch off from day-to-day pressures and turn negative thoughts or feelings into something positive, Local colleges offer a range of adult learning classes focussing on activities such as jewellery making or art – taking part in such courses can help you to feel more confident, motivated to be active and generally happier.

Christmas is a time for indulging, but eating lots of foods high in fat and carbohydrate can your body – everything from blood sugar levels, energy levels, and hormones to anxiety levels. A new year can motivate you to take up a healthier, better balanced diet, just as important for your mental health as your physical health. Try to include lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as fatty oils such as omega-3 and 6, and try to avoid stimulants such as sugar, caffeine and alcohol.

Make the most of natural light

Short January days and poor weather reduces the amount of day light and Vitamin D we get, all of which can affect us mentally and physically. Try to take regular breaks and go for a short walk at lunchtime.

Change your environment

Changing something in your own environment can help with motivation and mindset. For example, re-painting your walls to a lighter colour or using one-way blinds which let the maximum amount of light. Even the little things can help you feel productive and lift your mood.

Spend time with others

Spending time with others is one of the few pleasures in life that can cost very little, but reward you substantially. Whether you enjoy a countryside walk with friends or a FaceTime call at lunchtime, being around loved ones is strongly linked to good health. As well as this, other benefits include feeling less stressed, better motivation levels, and an increased sense of belonging and purpose. This is why our Mentors work to meet mentees face to face in coffee shops or go for a walk.


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"Until you try something like this you don’t realise how beneficial it is"