Prioritizing Your Mental Health in the New Year

photo of a smiling man

In the New Year, a lot of people are investing in resolutions to lose weight, exercise more often, quit smoking and go to the gym on a regular basis. While it’s always a good idea to pay more attention to your physical health to prevent chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease, why not take the same approach to take care of your mental health, too?

All too often, individuals with behavioral health issues like anxiety and depression wait until they start to experience the physical symptoms of those conditions before seeking help. But, with the right self-care, you can reduce your risk of developing some conditions. And for those starting a new sober lifestyle, taking a holistic approach to total body wellness can also protect your sobriety since you’ll be less tempted to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.

While there are a lot of factors that contribute to behavioral health issues and some are out of your control (like genetics), you can make a few lifestyle adjustments that can help you feel better and more in control of your emotions.

3 Strategies to Actively Support Your Mental Health

(1) Spend time with nature.

Have you ever had a rough day and spent some time outdoors and wondered why it made you feel so much better? How the great outdoors boosts our mood isn’t entirely clear, though it is well documented. In a study conducted by Stanford researchers, people who walked for 90 minutes in a quiet area outside showed decreased activity in a region of the brain associated with a key factor in depression.

(2) Be aware of how you are dealing with stress.

Chronic exposure to stress can actually change your brain chemistry making you more susceptible to common behavioral health issues like anxiety and depression. While you can’t completely avoid stressful situations, you do have a choice in how you react. Talk to your addiction recovery team about developing a list of stress-relieving activities that might work best for you including mindful meditation, yoga and talk therapy.

(3) Surround yourself with positive people!

There are specific things you can do to protect your mental health and you might be surprised to learn that simply being around those with a positive and grateful outlook can also do wonders for your mental health too.

If you’re starting the New Year with a few resolutions, consider adding a few that are designed to help support your overall health – mentally, physically and spiritually.

Get Help at 10 Acre Ranch

At 10 Acre Ranch, we know that behavioral health and substance use disorders often create a vicious cycle, as the symptoms of one disorder can exacerbate the symptoms of the other. Fortunately, there are ways to treat both disorders, regardless of which came first. At 10 Acre Ranch, our highly-trained staff works with male clients to create a personalized treatment plan that addresses mental health and substance use disorders to reduce symptoms and to increase the likelihood of long-term recovery. To learn more, call today: (877) 228-4679.

Retraining Your Brain for Greater Impulse Control

photo of a woman meditating in the forest

Have you ever experienced “buyer’s remorse”, jumped to conclusions or let your temper get the best of you – only later to berate yourself for not thinking things through? While there are only so many hours in the day to plan each next step, a repeated pattern of impulsive behavior can become a destructive force in your life that makes you feel out of control, erratic and unpredictable. Not a healthy way to live.

Controlling your behavior is an important aspect of living an emotionally stable and healthy lifestyle and it is a life skill that is especially critical for those on a path to addiction recovery. By training your brain to recognize the leading indicators of impulsive behaviors, you can apply those same skills to reduce your risk of addiction relapse.

Here Are 3 Strategies You Can Use to Become More Mindful and Less Impulsive Throughout the Day.

(1) Make a list of the impulsive behaviors that you want to correct. But, the goal here isn’t to strive for “perfection”. Just think about the types of behaviors you can change that will have the most positive impact on your life.

(2) Identify the triggers that lead to those impulsive decisions. For example, do you want to cut back on making impulsive purchases can start saving money towards a new car? Think about the people, places or emotions that typically are associated with spending money on things you don’t really need. Sometimes, the simple act of recognizing your behaviors can help you curb your impulsive instincts to react.

(3) Take a mental health break. If you do start to feel “wound up” and exposed to some of your impulsive behavior triggers, make the choice to take a step back and remove yourself from the situation. Chances are, you’ll be able to calm down, become more mindful of your emotions and take a more rational approach to your actions.

Access Comprehensive Addiction Treatment While Addressing Behavioral Health Issues

Many individuals struggling with chemical dependency are also dealing with mental illness. When addiction co-occurs with other disorders, clients require a specialized addiction recovery plan. 10 Acre Ranch counselors, social workers, and addiction specialists can help clients manage both diagnoses to optimize the chance of treatment success.

To learn more about our CA men’s rehab program and how we can help, call 10 Acre Ranch at (877) 228-4679 today.