The month of May is dedicated to Mental Health Awareness and you may have missed it with so many of the stories dominating the news making everyone feel more anxious and less resilient. Ironically, if ever we needed a mental health check-up, it is now.
This month I am making extra effort to practice what I coach to my Mental Fitness clients. Mental health is not just about mental illness – it’s about healthy habits like getting enough sleep, managing stress by making time for fun, affirming your positive qualities and forgiving yourself for mistakes.
My MHA Week tip is: set aside time every day to breathe and unplug from your daily grind. If you feel anxious or stressed, use the box breathing technique.
Box breathing, also known as four-square breathing (used by navy seals to release stress), involves exhaling to a count of four, holding your lungs empty for a four-count, inhaling at the same pace, and holding air in your lungs for a count of four before exhaling and beginning the pattern anew. Repeat this 5 times.