This post is not an alternative or replacement for professional care. Please seek professional care for medical and health concerns.
True story: I have trouble giving my mind a break.
I am very, very often thinking, creating, analyzing and processing (let’s be honest, over-processing). My mind is constantly at work, even in my sleep.
Our minds are doing an incredible amount of work on a regular basis. Therefore, intentionally noticing and caring for our mind means tapping into our mental (sometimes referred to as intellectual) self-care.
Mental self-care can be described as any and every thing you do to take care of your mind.
Caring for your mind can help us address “heady” (gotta love a pun!) issues, such as stress, anxiety and of course, headaches. When thinking of the self-care needs for your mind, think of your needs on a spectrum: adults range from experiencing too much mental stimulus or not enough.
When we refer to “mental stimulus”, we are looking into the amount of activity, energy and work that your mind may be experiencing on a regular basis. For instance, the current self-care needs for my mind would be to decrease the amount of stimuli that I come in contact with, because as of now, my mind is working overtime.
You too may need to decrease your mental stimuli if:
- Your mind feels overworked and tired
- You’re experiencing frequent stress headaches or head pain
- Your profession or full-time work requires heavy processing and analyzing
There are quite a few ways to give your mind a break from constantly being at work. Check out these self-care ideas and see which ones you would like to try:
- For every 20 minutes you spend looking at a screen (computer, iPad, phone) physically close and rest your eyes for 30-60 seconds.
- Engage in meditation and/or a (simple) guided meditation.
- Take a break to watch something entertaining and fun (comedy show, movie . . .)
- Place a cold compress on your forehead when laying down to decrease inflammation
- Press the tips of your index and middle fingers on the sides of your temples and move them in light circular motions for a little head massage
When relaxing your mind, do your best to do just that: try not to pressure yourself or overthink this type of self-care. The focus is for mind to get the rest it deserves.
How do you like to relax your mind?