30 things to do in May
May is Mental Health Awareness Month
Normally, I do not do anything for awareness months but this one is hitting close to home. I am a Mental Health Counselor and do work day in and day out to provide support for people looking to achieve mental wellness. Psycho-Education and acquiring different skills are very important in the work that I do with others. Not only do I work with people around wellness, I also have many loved ones in my life who struggle with this every day. For this reason, I have decided to write a post of 30 things you can do every day this month to celebrate mental heath awareness month.
Some of these are activities you can do for yourself or for others, either way, may you achieve the peace of mind that you deserve.
1) Check in on a friend--- We all have those moments when we think about how someone is doing, think about reaching out and forget. It happens to me all of the time. This month, I encourage you to reach out to that person just to check in or to let them know that you are thinking about them. This small gesture can mean a lot to someone who may be going through some rough times.
2) Journal---It does not have to be fancy, you can grab a piece of paper and free-write. Even if you do not know what to write about, allow yourself to just put words on paper and get it out. You will be surprised at what you may be holding.
3) A day without social media--- You cannot even imagine how many times I have heard of people being on social media and all of a sudden feeling down. Social media is so popular that we find ourselves spending hours on it. Some of us may even compare ourselves to other people. My suggestion, stay off of it for a day and see if you notice a difference.
4) Go Outdoors---Every single day we are bombarded with different things that we have to do. Different stressors, responsibilities, commitments and much more can take away from checking in with ourselves. Take a moment for yourself and go outdoors to breathe fresh air. Even if it just for 5 minutes, enjoy the sun, wind, nature and breathe.
5) Find a Therapist ---Therapy has changed my life. There are so many different things that we are exposed to throughout our lives that we may never address. Therapy has allowed me the space to process everything that has impacted and allowed me to continue doing work on myself.
- Can't afford a therapist? Many insurance companies will cover one.
- Don't have insurance? There are some therapists that have sliding scales.
- Too busy to travel somewhere? Try Talkspace
- Individual therapy not your thing? Find a support group near you.
- Don't think you need therapy? It is helpful and EVERYONE can benefit from it.
6) Meditate---This has worked wonders for me. I explain why in my previous post.
7) Call a friend---I am the one friend who loves talking on the phone so I do not mind getting phone calls and talking. Call someone that will make you laugh, make you smile and that wont judge you.
8) Sleep---You deserve a full 8 hours of sleep! I love sleep so much that I will go to bed at 9PM sometimes just to make sure I get rest. Even if it is just one day this month, sleep in at least an extra 30 minutes!
9) Cook yourself a meal---Enjoy the process, smell the aromas, appreciate the taste!
10) Exercise---Whether is walking, running, sprinting, yoga, weights, or anything you are into. Get in your body, sweat, get moving!
11) Make some Art--- You can definitely color, paint, draw, doodle, whatever may help you destress. Do it for yourself. Do it to decompress.
12) Plan---We often have so many ideas about things that we want to do and the planning of it can be overwhelming. I suggest (if you have the capacity) that you sit down and plan out that project you have been wanting to do. It can be planning out your budget to save,planning out a trip you want to take, plan that exit plan from your soul sucking job, etc.
13) Hang out with friends or family---There are times when I do not feel like going out and there are some times that my friends and my family bring me so much needed laughter and enjoyment. Hang out with people you have not seen in a while that make you laugh.
14) Stay in---This is something that I do all of the time. I definitely get tired from working all week and I stay in, if I have no plans. Years ago, I would have NEVER done that. If you need rest, get some rest, you deserve it.
**Note: if you find yourself unable to leave the house or get out of bed because of how you may feel, I strongly suggest talking to a therapist.**
15) Listen to Music---Anything that makes you feel better and does not intensify your uncomfortable feelings.
16) Begin a gratitude journal---Every night, write 3 things you are grateful for. I've made many people do this and this is a great way to improve mood.
17) Take a Bath (or hot shower)---This is a great way to relax. Check out my previous post for more information.
18) Create a "Vision Board"---If you are feeling like you are in a rut or are trying to imagine something better, create a vision board. I cannot tell you what to put on it; however, one of my friends shows you on her post.
19) Watch something funny--- Laughing can help make you feel better and make you feel less stressed.
20) Learn more--- Do you know someone that is struggling with mental wellness issues? Are you someone that struggles with mental wellness? Learn more about mental health conditions so you can get more of an understanding on what you, your friend or family may be going through. Get support, if needed.
21) Clean (or don't)--- There was a point in my life when I would not clean because of how exhausted I was. Most of the time, cleaning my home (or room) makes me feel better. There is something about walking into a clean space that makes me feel calmer. If you are too tired to clean you should rest.
22) Learn your triggers---Something I have learned along the way is that identifying what makes you feel sad, mad, nervous, or any other uncomfortable feelings, can help prepare you for certain situations. Knowing these triggers can help with learning to deal with them in the moment. If this is hard to do, consider going to counseling to help you identify triggers and coping skills.
23) Drink some tea---Herbal teas are magical. My mom would give me yerba buena or té de manzanilla when I was feeling sick. Now, I drink tea to relax, to sleep, for energy. I know its simple but take the moment for yourself.
24) Read a book---This is a great way to distract yourself from everything that is going. Choose a book that you have been wanting to read and get lost in it.
25) Practice Mindfulness---No, mindfulness is not just meditation. As the weather changes, there is more opportunity for you to go outside and enjoy the weather. Try going outside and smelling the flowers, feeling the breeze or sun on your skin, taking your shoes off and stepping on grass, watch the trees move, the color of the sky,etc. You can also eat mindfully by savoring food, enjoying the flavors, and appreciating it as it nourishes your body.
26) Pamper yourself (at home)---As someone on a budget, I cannot pamper myself the way that I would like; however, I do what I can at home. You can make your own face masks , do your own nails, try different hairstyles, do your own make up, etc. Set some time for yourself, even if it is just for 1 hour.
27) Do something nice for someone---This does not have to be a grand gesture, it can be a small gesture that can make a big impact to someone that needs it.
28) Be easy of yourself---Everything does not work out how we expect it sometimes and that is okay. Just remember, you did what you could at the moment and what is meant to happen will occur in due time.
29) Write yourself (or someone) an inspirational note---Sometimes we need a little motivation. Write something positive and encouraging to yourself and post it so that you can see it everyday. You can also write a note for someone else to remind them that they will be alright.
30) Sing your praises--- We need to remind ourselves of all of the great things that we have accomplished so far. This is difficult for me but it is a good reminder of all of the things that I have overcome. Remind yourself of your amazingness and remember that you are doing the best you can!
My intention was to get this our at the beginning of May so you could try at least one per day; however, that did not work out how I expected. My hope is that you can try at least 5 of these activities and find some joy in doing so.
If some of these activities are difficult for you to do, write about that or try a different activity. These activities can improve mood but will not alleviate any mental health concerns.
As always, if you feel like there is something deeper going on emotionally, find a therapist to talk to. Reach out for support, you do not have do suffer alone.
Below are some resources in case you or someone you know needs them:
- Suicide Prevention Life Line
- National Alliance on Mental Illness
- The National Domestic Violence Hotline
- Psychology Today ( to find a Therapist)
If you need some that are specific for your region, you can email me and I can send you some links!
Thanks for reading!