You’ll find that when you open most magazines or articles that are talking about health or ‘looking after yourself’, they are usually talking about your physical wellbeing. So training your body, keeping yourself in shape whether that is for vanity reasons or for health reasons. But despite significant progress being made, there are still not enough articles which talk about what you can do to help improve your mental health. For this reason, today I wanted to share a post about mindfullness app, Headspace, and share how it can help you to take care of a different aspect of your health.
According to Mind UK, one in four of us will experience mental health issues every year. That’s a quarter of the whole UK population and to me that figure is concerning. I think that it’s partly to do with the stress of everyday life and the notion of always being ‘switched on’ with notifications appearing on our phone never allowing us to have a little quiet or a calm mind. From experience, I know that this alone can cause excess stress and can cause you to have problems sleeping and this obviously doesn’t make you feel great.
I recently found an app called Headspace which is said to help by becoming a personal trainer for your mind. It’s a free app to download and you can take a free ten day programme in which you meditate for ten minutes per day. It basically talks you through a meditation session which over time helps you to quiet the mind and give yourself a little time to reflect on how you’re feeling in your body and mind. For me, this was a completely new concept and I struggled quite a lot at the start. My mind is usually going at a million miles per hour so trying to clear it, if only for ten minutes, was seriously challenging. But I was determined to give it a good go.
I found that you can subscribe for £7.95 per month or pay £59.88 for the year. I decided to go with the monthly payments because you can cancel at any time if you change your mind or if you find you don’t really use it enough. I know a lot of people will read this and think it’s not for them because you have to pay for membership. But are you one of those people who would happily pay for a gym membership or some form of exercise class? Essentially, both things revolve around the same idea – looking after yourself. That’s how I started to think about it anyway.
Once you’ve subscribed, it opens up a whole library of guided exercise. You can continue on your ten minutes a day programme for another 20 days to complete one whole month with mindfullness. You can then go on to choose any other series in the library whether you want to focus on health, sport, relationships or performance. You can even do single sessions for when you’re commuting, walking, trying to sleep and lots more. There’s an incredible bank of programmes to choose from and I haven’t even experimented with many of them yet.
I know that looking after our minds can sometimes get overlooked, especially when we’re busy because we don’t always see the negative effects until they really start to impact us. But it’s surprising how much difference taking ten minutes a day can really be. Just think, if you were doing intense physical exercises for ten minutes every day, you would see a difference to your body. The same goes for mindfullness. If you’re consistent and are keen to make it a part of your life, it can help you to make significant improvements to your overall mental wellbeing.