January is Mental Wellness Month. Mental wellness refers to a state in which one’s psychological well-being allows them to function well using their cognitive and emotional capabilities. Contrary to popular belief, mental wellness is more that the absence of a mental illness.
By marking January as the mental wellness month globally, more people are encouraged to be proactive in taking care of their mental health. To help with you with this, I created a 30-day mental wellness challenge for this month. There are many options to get through with. The most important thing to remember is that these options are not a replacement for medication and therapy.
The challenge helps build your mental strength. Just like any other muscle in the body, the mind benefits from daily workouts to help improve your wellness. You can start the Mental Wellness challenge at any time of the year. Most people prefer to start the challenge at the beginning of the month. Whatever you prefer, just ensure that you take note of where you started and track your progress.
Please Note: This challenge is largely rooted in selfcare and social structure to improve your mental health.
The 30-day Mental Wellness Challenge
Day 1 – Journal about how you feel.
Take time to get in touch with your inner self, as well as to find out how you would like to feel after the challenge. Below are some wonderful prompts you can use to help with your jourmalling.
- Today I learned…
- My ideal day would look like…
- I am grateful for…
- I would like to accomplish the following three things…
- This is how I am feeling right now…
Read More: My Selfcare Routine
Day 2 – Spend at least 20 minutes in the outdoors
Whether that means taking a nature walk, going for a light jog or walking around the block, take time outside.
Day 3 – De-Clutter
Clearing out your space has a tremendous effect on your mental health. It is particularly helpful for those who experience anxiety. Getting rid of clutter helps your mind.
Day 4 – Unplug for 24 hours
Technology has become an indispensable part of our lives. For many people, however, this has led to an over-reliance on our gadgets. On Day 4 of the 30-day mental wellness challenge, go off the internet for 24 hours. Do whatever works for you. Some people prefer to log out of all apps while others opt to delete all their apps.
Day 5 – Call someone that you love
It is easy to get caught up in life’s daily routines. This is why it is important to pause and get in touch with our loved ones. Pick up the phone and call someone that you love.
Day 6 – Slow down, be present
Our fast-paced lives mean we hardly get time to truly be present in the moment. Today, take time to slow down. Be present. I have found that taking time to note my surroundings helps anchor me in the present. Take note of five things that you can do with each of the following senses: see, hear, feel, smell and touch.
Day 7 – Make a list of next week’s goals
What would you like to achieve? What are your short term and long term goals?
Day 8 – Do one thing that you have been putting off for a long time.
What’s the one thing you have been postponing for a while but would love to do? Today provides that chance.
Day 9 – Read something that will assist your mental wellness
Read your favorite book, fun facts, listicles, or even an informative blogpost. Here is a good place to start on this blog.
Day 10 – Extend kindness to a stranger
Read More: What I am learning about grief
Day 11 – Practise positive selftalk
Choose an affirmation that resonates with you. Repeat it throughout the day.
Day 12 – Find ways to improve your morning routine.
What does your morning routine look like? How can you improve it?
Day 13 – Create a sacred space for yourself
This creates a safe space for you to retreat to after a hard day. Fill it with all your favourite things – sweet photographs, special letters, scented candles or even your favourite rug.
Day 14 – Do not be afraid to ask for help
Day 15 – Make a list of 10 things that you are grateful for today
Day 16 – Go through today without complaining.
Day 17 – Go to bed half an hour earlier today
Getting adequate rest is an important part of mental wellness. This not only allows the body to recuperate, it is also a wonderful opportunity to recharge.
Day 18 – Make time to enjoy the sunrise/sunset today.
Sit and soak in the splendid beauty of that moment.
Day 19 – Write a letter to the 10-year old that you were
If you could go back in time, what would you tell the 10-year old that you were?
Day 20 – Make time to watch something that encourages you or makes you laugh.
Day 21 – Be intentional about how you speak today.
Try as much as you can to make sure that it is stuff that builds and not destroys.
Day 22 – Do something that takes you out of your comfort zone
Say hi to that neighbour you have never talked to. Write an audacious plan for your year. Take yourself on a date. Venture out to a new part of town. Learn how to crochet.
Choose something that takes you out of your comfort zone, but one that benefits you.
Day 23 – Practice deep breathing for five minutes today.
Deep breathing has been shown to ease anxiety. Read more about that here.
Day 24 – Say NO to the things that you do not want to do.
One of the greatest pillars for mental wellness is learning to say No and to set boundaries. This gives you space to chase after only the things that set your heart on fire.
Day 25 – List 10 things that you love about yourself.
Day 26 – Spend time alone today. If possible, plan a date night for yourself.
Day 27 – Make time for a healthy hearty breakfast today
Read More: Taking a minute can save a life
Day 28 – Clear out your email inbox.
This is the time to get rid of all those emails that keep piling in your inbox. Hit unsubscribe for emails that you no longer read/ find useful.
Day 29 – Take photos of 3 things that make you happy today.
Day 30 – Evaluate the progress you have made during this mental wellness challenge.
What would you like to keep doing? Is there anything that worked for you? What was your best day? Do you have a list of things you can commit to do in the coming months to improve your mental health?