Tips for staying on top of your mental health

Jodie Cariss, founder of on-demand therapy service Self Space, shares some advice on how to check in with your emotional wellbeing.
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To give yourself the best chance of staying on track with your goals – without sacrificing your mental wellbeing – it's worth checking in on yourself. We asked Jodie Cariss, a therapist and founder of high-street therapy service Self Space, how she advises her clients to keep mental wellbeing top of mind.

1. Be honest with yourself. ‘Be honest about when you're in survival mode and when you're thriving so that you can properly tend to your needs. Denial will not serve you, but getting curious and reflective with where you're at will help you prioritize what you need and move forwards in an aligned and compassionate way.’

Jodie says these are some of the warning signs that you're in survival mode:

• Feeling overwhelmed.

• Stress and tension in the body.

• Procrastination.

• Constantly fatigued.

Characteristics of when you're thriving:

• Excitement and motivation.

• Relaxed and at ease.

• Confidence.

• Empathy.

02. Decompress daily. ‘This is a biggie if you're going to be able to keep going. Being a founder is all about playing the long game, so you need to make sure you're looking after yourself. If you don't look after yourself, you'll end up in a cycle of burnout. Decompression doesn't have to be big, but doing something daily will keep you buoyant.’

Jodie's tips on how to decompress:

• Deep belly breaths.

• Moving your body, like exercise, yoga or stretching.

• Getting outside.

• Playing with pets.

3. Cultivate community. ‘We're all messy, vulnerable human beings trying our best to hold it together. When we let others into a part of our reality, we feel less alone and give them permission to also not have it all together. Connect with your people, let them in. Chances are they'll feel less alone, too. Win-win.’ 

4. Recognize your limitations. ‘You're one person with a limited amount of resources. When we accept our limits with mindful recognition and self-compassion, we can start to live with more ease and less strain.’

5. Give yourself credit. ‘How often do you stop and recognize a job well done (for yourself and others)? Or how quickly do you move on to the next job? Being a founder is tough at times, excellent at times and everything in between. Celebrating successes does wonders for our energy, mindset and sustainability in business.’

A version of this article was published in the Courier Weekly newsletter. For more useful stories, tips, tricks and simply good advice, sign up here.

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