As queer people, our mental health is an aspect we must consider a little bit more than straight people. We are constantly pushed to our limits, in life and relationships. These self-care tips are things you can easily add to your routine to ensure you take care of your mental health. Check in every now and then!
Find ways to decompress. Decompressing in terms of mental health simply means calming down. You calm your mind down, you calm your body down, and you just let everything fall away for a little while. One of the best ways to do this is through meditation. Turn your lights off, sit in your room, out on some calming noises and just be. Allow yourself to breathe deeply, letting all of your troubles, no matter what they are, slip out of your mind. Doing this for about fifteen minutes a day can help you destress your life and keep your mental health balanced.
It’s important to also give yourself a creative outlet. Drawing, dancing, singing, or (if you’re like me) writing! The object of this isn’t to be good, just to de-stress. So, if singing at the top of your lungs with no tone or pitch at all or dancing incredibly off beat is what makes you feel better, then do it. Having an outlet that allows you to express yourself in ways words don’t allow is the point. It’s more about letting go than it is about being good.
One of my favorite ways I personally practice self-care is through face masks! There’s something so renewing about peeling off a nice charcoal mask that really makes you forget about life’s problems. Whether you chose to do a peel off, a sheet, or a clay mask, taking care of your skin and relaxing as you wait for the mask to work its magic, detoxes your mind and frees up a lot of useless anxiety left up there from day to day stress.
Staying away from social media, and your phone altogether can really help de-stress. It’s easy today to become obsessed with what others are posting, and we begin to compare our lives to theirs. Avoid the downward spiral that can be Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook. Remember that everyone has a different journey, and just because you are not where someone else it, doesn’t mean you won’t get there one day. However, clogging up your mind with insecurities about yourself does absolutely no one any good, especially you. Giving yourself a day of just no social media, or a week if you can make it, will help you remind yourself that this is your life, and it is your job to live it the happiest you can.
I hope a few of these techniques can get you started on putting yourself first. But, the most important thing is you find what works for you. It may be none of these things, it may be a mixture of all of them. As long as you are able to find peace and balance in your mental health, you’re doing it right.
Words by Ethan Harris