At SELAMOUR, we believe in love, self-care, and self-love. So this month, as part of our #MentalHealthMonth campaign, we'll be talking about how mental health can affect your physical wellbeing—and what you can do to get out of a low state.
The last few weeks have been tough for me. I worked too much and neglected my health, even though I'm the founder of a brand that promotes self-love and self-care at the forefront of everything we do. But I was stubborn and refused to seek help until I reached my breaking point. Then it hit me: if I don't take care of myself now, nothing else will get done either!
Do you know that mind and body are connected?
It's easy to forget that our mental health is just as important as our physical health. But the truth is that it plays a huge role in our general well-being, and can even help prevent serious health conditions.
Mental health conditions are also linked to sleep problems like insomnia and sleep apnea. Insomnia can make it hard to fall asleep or stay asleep, while sleep apnea leads to breathing problems that cause frequent waking up during the night. Yep, that's me over the last few weeks. I have woken up in the middle of the night with panic attacks. It's not fun.
When you feel stressed, anxious, or depressed, you may experience changes in your appetite and sleep patterns. You might find yourself eating more or less food than usual, or having trouble sleeping through the night. Some people even experience physical symptoms like headaches or stomachaches when they're under stress. For me, it’s headaches and chest pains.
So here's what happened next: I reached out for help and started working on getting myself back on track. And now that I'm feeling better (and more productive than ever), I want to share some tips with you so that if you ever find yourself feeling down or overwhelmed by stress or anxiety again—you can take action right away instead of letting things pile up until they become overwhelming.
1. Asking for help is strength, not weakness
I reached out to Beyond the Blue - New Access. A program for business owners who might be experiencing depression, anxiety, or other mental health challenges. The decision has been transformative. I have some limiting beliefs I hold about myself—like "I'm not good enough" or "I can't do this." For those who are familiar with my page, a little of back story: my mum told me that she didn't think there was a future for me when I was in my early teen. It somehow manages to mess up with me into my adult life. Working through and overcoming them are crucial. Now I have gradually built up a pocket full of evidence to support the opposite—that with dedication you can achieve anything!
2. Exercise preferably in the sunshine :)
When I am feeling down, exercise is the last thing on my list, to be honest. But I forced myself for 10 mins, 15 mins, then 30 mins. Just take one step, one day at the time. Exercise can help reduce anxiety by releasing endorphins that make us feel happier and more positive about ourselves. I have done something positive for myself after all.
3. Eat healthy
I know it sounds cliche, but I really believe that taking care of yourself starts with what goes into your body. When I was feeling down or anxious, I used to reach out to temporary relief that delivers super transient happiness, such as alcohol or sugary treats—but it was just a sloppery slope that led me deeper and deeper into the abyss until eventually I hit rock bottom.
4. Care for your pet if you have any
Spending more time with my puppy, watching her play in the park, and "distracting" myself with sunshine and fresh air have all been helpful ways for me to take care of my mental health. My puppy has taught me so much. She reminds me every day that I am loved unconditionally and that we all should go through life having fun.
5. Stick my gratitude list on the bathroom mirror
I was too busy worrying about how much left to go instead of reminding myself how far I have become. I forgot how blessed I was with my family, my partner. I forgot that I woke up today, while lots of people can't. Make a list and look at it first thing in the morning!
6. Take 10 mins out for your skin and mind.
Your skin can tell whether you're feeling good or bad—and if you're not taking time for yourself, that might show up in all kinds of ways. But when you're tired and stressed out, it's easy to forget about yourself. Not gonna lie, I'm guilty of this myself! I felt depressed and let my skincare routine slip. I have recently started picking up my gua sha routine again and I have felt so much better, less tension, more relaxed. For me, meditating with my rose quartz eye mask is a life changing practice. It helps me relax so much that sometimes I fall asleep while putting on my rose quartz eyet mask!