It’s very easy for life to creep up on us and become very overwhelming. When that happens we can lose track of the little things that can all add to negative contributions to our state of mind, and in today’s blog post I’ve highlighted how six have had an effect on mine so far.

Before I dive in with the main content of this blog post I just want to say that I’m not a qualified therapist or anything like that. For this blog post, I have simply looked into past parts of my life where I have had some mental difficulty and assessed what contributing factors that I could change had a cause and effect for my mental state at the time.

Just me, using my experience of bouncing back from mental health struggles to spread awareness.

Now that I have that off my chest, let’s dig in with the six things from our everyday lives that have a direct impact on our mental wellbeing. All of what is listed below I have struggled with before, I have also overcome them or am in the process of doing just that – and the positive impact they have had on me mentally has been huge.

Financial Stability

Breaking the bank or creating masses of credit card debt to have the latest material goods has nothing on having a little financial stability.

For years I always tried to put a minimum of 10% of my monthly pay into a savings account, but I haven’t been able to do that for the last few months since I moved into my own place. Due to this, I haven’t put any money away and have been scraping the bottom of the barrel leading up to the next payday. 

From there I had to ask myself, I’ve made the big jump into a mortgage, living by myself at this moment in time – with all my previous financial commitments still in place, am I living beyond my needs? The short answer is yes.

These past six weeks I’ve been looking at my outgoings and letting go of some I just don’t need anymore, before long that old long list began to look pretty short. With that, I can start saving again – and when I can save money, it goes toward things like my travels, and the more of those I have, the happier I am.

Taking in the views in Norway – my most recent and one of my favourite holidays.

Social Calendar

I will never stop preaching how important this is. My ever busy social calendar does nothing short of keeping me sane. Just this past weekend I took a trip to the cinema to see IT Chapter 2, had two friends from London come to stay before having a very chilled Sunday watching The Ashes. 

I always like to have something lined up for the weekends and things to look forward to in the distance. Over the next few weekends, I have a mixture of West Ham games and a stag weekend in Edinburgh! Looking further down the line to April/May 2020 I have a two week trip to California!

Final drinks during my brother’s stag weekend in February. Looking forward to Edinburgh for the stag of a lifelong friend in two weeks time.

Throughout the highs and lows of my mental wellbeing, my busy social calendar has always played a huge part and I don’t know where I would be without it.

Relationships

I don’t just mean relationships in terms of your boyfriend/girlfriend. However, if you are in a relationship like that, it’s very important that it’s a healthy one.

I’m talking about relationships on a much broader scope. Friends, family, work colleagues, neighbours and many many more. 

 

A very solid relationship with a selection of my closest friends in this photo.

Resentment is corrosive and I hate it. I understand that at times I’m probably a hard person to be around, especially when feeling consumed with negativity, but all I want with every relationship in my life is peace. I’ve never been someone to actively be a wind-up merchant or belittle/bully someone for what I’m envious of.

Physical Health

You only have to go back to February of this year when my physical health took its latest slump. 

It was in the immediate aftermath of my brother’s stag weekend (Funny that) and my health was just in pieces. After an afternoon run around Central London in which I hit the wall and had to walk all the way home to Camberwell during a Sunday evening drizzle.

One of my favourite running routes while living in London – Chelsea Embankment.

That evening I felt horrendous, and instead of letting it get the better of me for a long period of time – I signed up for a half-marathon.

When I have a challenge lined up I always up my game. I’ve run 10ks in London, I’ve cycled from London to Paris and the Hackney Half Marathon in May was my furthest running distance event to date. 

My favourite sporting achievement – which I completed on this day three years ago.

I completed an eight-week training program to run the event in 1:55 – meeting my target of a sub-two-hour half-marathon.

I’ve kept it all up since and my physical health has been pretty good – and, somewhat predictably, my mental health has been heaps better than that drizzly afternoon in Central London when I hit the runners wall.

Fresh after running the Hackney half in May.

Job Satisfaction

Incredibly important, and I think a lot of people live their lives without it. I’m just about to embark on the first stages of a career change I’ve ummed and ahhed about for a while.

My old job wasn’t a bad one, it was actually a very good, respectable career path. It just wasn’t for me for a lot of reasons and it was time for a change. Since I got back from my first backpacker trip in May 2015 I’ve warmed to the idea of a writing-based career 

When my mind began to linger towards something I would much rather be doing I began to devalue what I was doing for a living, which at 25 years old is for at least another 40 years (We all know that number is only going up!)

Looking forward to starting my journey towards a career as a Sports Journalist on Monday.

Listening To The The Voice Inside Our Heads

During my 2015 round the world trip, I spent two weeks in New Zealand, only travelling around the North Island. I immediately fell in love with the country and I already began to label it as my favourite country on the planet.

Above and below – two of my favourite New Zealand North Island memories.

A month later I returned home from that trip and the only thing I wanted was to get back to New Zealand and see the rest. 

It was common knowledge amongst my close friends and family that would travel again, and when I said I wanted to head back to New Zealand again just eight months after my first visit, eyebrows were raised. People would say it’s a bit far for a second visit so soon, others said I would struggle to afford the flights due to my desired travel time being New Zealand’s summer. 

As a matter of fact, the only people who understood my heavy desire to return so soon were people who had travelled around both islands. 

I didn’t let the doubt amongst people change my mind, I listened to the voice inside my head that wanted that second New Zealand trip. Eight months and a lot of hard work later, I got that opportunity.

Four photos from my second trip to New Zealand in January 2016.

With that trip New Zealand cemented itself as my favourite country in the world, I’m blessed to have memories of two amazing trips to New Zealand and I have a tattoo below my right ankle to show my love for the country.

 

Six Things That Go A Long Way Towards Mental Wellbeing

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