Last week I had the ambition to write a mental health manifesto, a practical guide to good mental health. Yet I never got around to writing it; I wasn’t feeling well at all and I could barely get out of bed. I was feeling down, my mental health was terrible; I spent a good portion of a day at work stood in a cupboard and you tend to know it isn’t going to plan when you’re stood in a cupboard.
But I’m writing it now. This is what I’ve got so far. What do you reckon?
HEADBLOGGER MENTAL HEALTH MANIFESTO 2016
1.Variation will help you see some sunshine
Do something different. It doesn’t have to be spontaneous, it doesn’t have to be something you’ve never done before, and it doesn’t have to be anything big or important. You can still keep your routine – there’s nothing wrong with having a plan! Yet do keep making little changes because variation always gives you a different perspective, even by the smallest of degrees. It expands your field of vision, widens the context in which you frame your own actions.
My little variation was quite a big change, I went on a wee holiday to Skye and you can’t do that all the time but even the slightest variation gives you an insight; a patch of light that can break its way through a storm cloud. So what variations could you make, especially in the workplace? What patches of light can you find? How can you look after your mental health from 9 to 5?
Vary that commute. Turn left not right. Get the train, not the bus. Run yourself silly!
Subvert your morning and approach tasks in a different order. When looking at that inbox fills you with dread then that is the day you could do something else first.
Stand up, move those arms about and take a stroll around the office. Chat to a colleague you don’t really know.
Don’t check your emails on the loo. If you have to read, read a book.
Do you have to work at your desk? What about a change of scenery?
Breathe. Every now and then.
Get away on your lunch break, choose a different spot every Wednesday and walk towards it. Take a risk; see how far you can go within your lunch break. Have a mini adventure.
Try fancy teabags!!!
Learn a new skill. Try to take on a different responsibility. Embrace a little bit of change.
Don’t let the day end the same way every day. Don’t go straight home. Don’t count down to the weekend.
Get some sleep. Your full eight hours. Even if you have to go to bed at 10.
Variation will help you see some sunshine, even when the sky looks pretty cloudy. And who knows, if you can embrace a little change in the workplace maybe you won’t need that holiday after all?
Have a think about it. What could your variations be? Maybe you could share them below, or you can always find me @HeadtorchAndy
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