Stressed? Not sleeping well? 5 tips to improve your mental health

Psst! Psst! It’s time to wake up from your brain fog. Constantly being on the go and juggling work, sleep and a social life is a perfect recipe for stress and having an overall feeling of gloom.

The pressures that young successful women like you face often lead them to neglect important aspects of their lives, including their mental health. Serotonin is a hormone your body produces that brightens your mood, increases focus and energy, keeps memory sharp, and balances appetite and sleep, to name a few. When your feel-good hormones drop below an ideal level, your spunky ‘can do’ self can be left with no appetite, erratic sleeping patterns, and feelings of irritability.

Here are a few tips to increase your serotonin, improve your overall mental health and get you back to feeling like your glamorous self!

1. Eat Healthy

What we put into our mouth directly impacts what happens in our brain. Consuming large amounts of sugar, alcohol and caffeine can make you go from a high to a low faster than you can say “Iced Venti Double Shot Almond Milk Mocha Latte.” Dump temporary picks up from the Starbucks line, and instead increase your B6 intake and your healthy foods in general by eating dark leafy greens, fruits and healthy proteins.

2. Become one with nature

Or at least get your booty outside as much as possible. It’s been proven that people who suffer from vitamin D deficiency also suffer from depression, and the sun is a rich source of the much needed vitamin. Plus, light exposure increases your serotonin. Fresh air, dirt, sun, trees and flowers often times boost your mood and your overall health. So ditch Netflix and get outdoors!

3. Exercise

Before you groan at the thought of running a marathon, remember that exercise releases endorphins, which are the body’s natural feel-good chemicals. Exercising reduces stress while increasing serotonin. All you need is 30 minutes of exercise a day to greatly improve your mood and reduce feelings of stress. Keep it light and fun; ride a bike, find the nearest roller rink, play tennis or simply go for a walk.

4. Reduce your screen time

As tempting as it is to binge-watch the latest Insta Stories, too many hours dedicated to the blue screen can begin to deteriorate your mental health, making you irritable and only wanting more screen time. Instead, pick up a puzzle, read a book or have a good old fashion chat with your bestie, while in the same room!

5. Sleep

First, refer to steps 1-4 in order to improve your nightly zzzzz’s. Sleep is the most important component of keeping your head on straight while tackling the many demands of everyday life. A few ways to keep yourself on a healthy sleep track include cutting out screen time at least 30 minutes before bed (and not leaving your phone on the nightstand)  meditating before bed, eliminating sugary snacks in the hours before bed, and finally, closing your eyes!

You officially have permission to step off the hamster wheel, put down your phone and take the first step to clearing your mind and getting back to you!

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