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In honor of Women’s history month - Celebrate Women’s History Month by Focusing on Your Mental Health

“You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.” —Buddha

We should celebrate the women in our lives every month, but especially during Women’s History Month! One amazing way to celebrate and honor the women in your life is to remind them how important their mental well-being is and encourage them to really prioritize themselves. Although we are certainly living in a different age than our parents and grandparents, women are still dealing with tremendous struggles. For instance, 1 in 5 women experience a common mental health disorder such as depression or anxiety. Black, Asian and Ethnic minority women face inequalities and obstacles to their mental health like racism and stigma. This all can add to making these women at more risk of experiencing common mental health issues. So what are some ways we can help improve women’s mental health?

Here are some really simple but truly effective tips to add to your daily routine that can help improve your mental health:

  • Self-care time - Create time in your schedule for yourself to do anything that brings you happiness– it could be reading, journaling, taking a bath, going on a stroll, or simply doing nothing. Setting aside time for yourself is crucial to meeting your needs and making sure that you are taking care of yourself, even if it is just for thirty minutes.

  • Practice mindfulness - Mindfulness is simple, but it isn’t the easiest thing to do. We get caught up in our hectic and busy lives and forget to stop and smell the roses. One way you can practice mindfulness is to try to be present in what you are doing at that moment. Be mindful of your breath or your surroundings. If you are washing dishes, instead of thinking about how your day was or what is on your to-do list for tomorrow, think about how it feels to have the warm water running on your hands as you scrub a dish with a soapy sponge. The point is– being aware of the present moment can really bring you to a place of gratitude for existing as a living and breathing human being.

  • Be kind to yourself - we naturally focus on the negative things in life, so it can be hard to be gentle with ourselves. Instead of thinking, “I wish I did more. I could’ve been better. I failed at this”, maybe try shifting your perspective to “I did enough. I put in as much effort as I was willing to give. I made mistakes, but failing is part of what helps me grow”. It’s not always easy trying to shift your negative thoughts to positive ones, but try to at least be kind to yourself.

  • Exercise regularly - whether indoors or outdoors, it can improve your mood, increase energy, and increase cognitive function. Exercising allows the brain to secrete major neurotransmitters like dopamine and serotonin which are linked to treating depression.

  • Get enough sleep - Of course, sleep is important, but how many of us actually sleep the adequate amount of hours that we should? Getting enough sleep, and quality sleep, is crucial to our mental health. Perhaps put your phone on do-not-disturb an hour before your bedtime and just unwind. If you don’t have a bedtime, it might be nice to get your sleep cycle on a consistent schedule.

These tips alone may not help with treating mood disorders. Please get in touch with a medical professional for further help and guidance.

References: By: Office of Behavioral Health Equity. (n.d.). Celebrate women's history month by Prioritizing Your Mental Health. SAMHSA. Retrieved March 17, 2022, from Habits to improve mental health for women - women's care. Women's Care Florida. (2020, October 24). Retrieved March 17, 2022, from Sharma, D. A., & *, N. (2021, February 26). Exercise and brain health. Whole Brain Health Initiative. Retrieved March 17, 2022, from The relationship you have with yourself. Mental Health Foundation. (2020, January 16). Retrieved March 17, 2022, from Women's Mental Health Facts - Agenda. (n.d.). Retrieved March 18, 2022, from  

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