wellness

16 women share the mental health hacks that have changed their lives.

Over the past few ~unprecedented~ years, we've learned that now more than ever, investing in your mental health is always a good idea. 

When everything around us might be going to s**t, keeping as positive a mindset as possible can make a world of difference. 

And while working out every day and eating five serves of vegetables may help, at times, large lifestyle shifts can feel out of reach.

Watch: Scientific happiness hacks you can try today. Post continues below.


Video via Mamamia.

So we spoke to 16 women about the simple tricks they have for taking care of their mental health.

Whether you're in the midst of a crisis or would like to future proof your mindset, here are 16 mental health hacks that have changed women's lives.

"Every now and then I go phone-less for extended periods of time. I have taken five-day holidays interstate and not taken my phone because I needed the digital detox. Yes, it can be tricky, but you feel so revived afterwards. It brings me back to the present and reminds me to appreciate the ‘now’. I also delete Instagram regularly – not just the app, but my actual Instagram. Then I’ll go a few months – one time nearly a year – without it. It’s not for self-esteem reasons though, it’s to spend more time on what’s important, which greatly helps my mental health." – Bronte.

"I stopped drinking alcohol altogether. Mentally and physically, it has been the best thing ever. I'm not buying into the 'mummy wine time' trope anymore." - Jaime.

"I have set up a button on my phone screen labelled SOS. It has reminders, and links to all the things that help me when I start to feel anxious, such as recorded meditations (from my psychologist and ones I found online), scripted exercises, like breathing on my hands, and reminders of body hacks I can use, like running cold water over my arms." - Lauren.

Image: Supplied.

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"Find a buddy and go for a walk and chat a few times a week at lunch time. We all don’t have the time but putting it in the diary and making it a priority benefits your productivity and wellbeing. Otherwise, walking meetings are great too rather than coffee catch-ups." – Sally.

"I allow for some time away from my children. They are my greatest joy, but also my greatest stressors." - Caroline.

"I try to do one thing I really want to do that day, whether it’s watching something, reading a book, or eating something I’m craving." – Kee.

Image: Getty.

"Morning exercise is now my non-negotiable every single morning. Sometimes other things get in the way, like my kids or my business but for my mental health, a walk or a bike ride EVERY day just has to happen. Everyone in my family knows it and reminds me to go for a walk before I start stressing about the day. Endorphins set me up for the whole day." – Yuki.

"I run or swim most days at dusk. It helps me clear out the mental load of the day’s events and stresses." - Natasha.

"I strictly limit my social media intake everyday. We are not built for subconscious comparisons with hundreds of different people each day!" - Annabelle.

"I use meditation – even if it’s just a 10 minute one in the car. There are some great apps and I recently treated myself to wireless headphones. I also make sure my husband shares the mental load." – Janeya.

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Image: Getty.

"I’m a homebody with generalised anxiety disorder and a four-month-old. I don’t add exercise to my to-do list – I’ve found then it’s like a chore. I just get out and go for a walk with dogs and bubs. Self-care for me is NOT adding another task to my list. It’s switching off and knowing that that’s okay." – Kaela.

"I have 'walk the dog' listed on my to-do list every single day. It forces me to always take some time out in the morning to do it and most weeks, I stick to it at least five days at week. Even on the days where I really can't be bothered, I always feel so much better afterwards – and I'm sure my dog does too." – Jess,

Listen to No Filter, where host, Mia Freedman interviews resilience expert; Hugh Van Cuylenberg. Post continues below.


"I online shop (and 90 per cent don’t buy anything) to clear my brain of challenging news and events." - Natasha.

"I try to turn off my computer and my phone as soon as I get home from work." – Rikki.

"When I wake up feeling down, I'll allow myself to feel my feelings for a few minutes before consciously 'moving on'. Usually that means having a shower, washing off all my shitty emotions, playing my 'happy' playlist at full volume and having a dance around the house while giving it a tidy until things don't feel so bad. Most of the time, this works a treat, but if not I'll take it easy on myself for the rest of the day. Journalling helps, as does a social media detox, cooking a good meal and calling a friend. I have a whole bank of 'strategies' I fall back on for the days my mental health feels challenged. Worst case scenario, I can always rely on a fresh start the next day."

"I get a really good massage at least once a month." - Natasha.

Feature Image: Getty.

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