How Athletes Can Take Care of Their Mental Health
What better time to highlight some ways athletes can take care of their mental well-being and offset stress than during National Self-Care Month?
As we watch Simone Biles put her mental health first and make waves in the industry, athletes around the world are seeing a different side of things. A side that realizes that their mental health shouldn’t be put on the back-burner.
Your mental well-being is just as important as your physical one, and depression and anxiety deserve the same careful treatment as that of a broken bone or sprain. Let’s delve into some ways that you can take care of your mental health this September.
First things first…
The results of prepping, training, and dedicating so much of your time to a sport can be rewarding, but also extremely exhausting. The pressure to constantly perform at your best can easily cause you to feel overwhelmed and stressed out mentally and physically.
To help ease the mental strain you’re feeling, try to keep a positive mindset. You’d be surprised at how being optimistic about your progress and your goals can help get you out of a mental rut. Don’t let in negative energy by comparing your progress to your competition or even your teammates. Keep focused on your accomplishments and how well you are doing.
Along with mental stress, you also need to combat the toll of physical stress on your body. Why? Because overexerting yourself can cause symptoms like chest pain, high blood pressure, insomnia, and more, potentially leading to severe injuries.
Worrying over whether or not you can continue your sport due to injury will ultimately cause serious mental turmoil creating even more problems. To alleviate both kinds of stress, consider incorporating a product like P2Life’s EnduroBoost Adaptogens, as it has ingredients like Rhodiola Rosea to help reduce fatigue and exhaustion.
Take a break
Give your mind and body a break and make time for rest and recovery. There’s nothing wrong with taking time for yourself. Self-care isn’t something that you should feel guilty about or something that you should allow people to convince you that you don’t need.
In the end, the happier you are, the better you may perform. During this time, do activities that aren’t related to your sport. Yoga, meditation, painting, retail therapy, or essentially anything that takes your mind off of stressful things and relaxes you is beneficial to your well-being.
Spa days are a great way to relax both the mind and body. Massages are generally a part of spa days, and they can do everything from improving pain to boosting mental wellness. Warm baths share many of the same benefits as massages, so it never hurts to include that as well.
Aside from relaxing activities, self-care can also include eating healthy meals and getting proper nutrients to fuel your brain and body. It’s been found that healthy foods are beneficial to your well-being as they can improve mood, better your memory, and help you get a good night’s rest.
Find a therapist
Combating mental strain early is key. There’s no reason for you to wait until you’re overworked to the max to talk to someone about how you’re feeling. The earlier you address your situation, the better it will be for a professional to help prevent you from getting to your tipping point.
There are many online therapy options available, and it’s only a matter of finding a therapist that makes you feel comfortable and seen. When you do find someone that you like, let them know what is on your mind so you both can come up with some solutions to your problems.
You won’t always find the answers you’re looking for from the first session, so don’t get discouraged if it takes longer than you believed it would. Any steps you make towards improving your mental health this September is a step in the right direction.