Therapists and mental health professionals like to say, “You must first put on your oxygen mask.” To put it differently, you must look after yourself to properly care for your family. That’s a piece of advice offered to everyone, but it’s especially important for fathers.
Fathers go to great lengths to ensure that things go smoothly. However, keeping the engines running can be physically and mentally demanding. Most dads get zero credit for the remarkable job they do, and some times it can take a toll on their mental health.
So to help you stay mentally fit, we’ve decided to share 10 mental health tips for dads in this article.
1. Get enough sleep
Sleep is needed for a healthy mind and body. When you’re not getting enough sleep, you may feel tired, irritable, or even depressed. Lack of sleep can also raise stress levels which can lead to anxiety attacks.
If you don’t get enough rest, you’ll find it hard to cope with everyday life. You might even start to lose interest in activities you used to enjoy. Getting more sleep will improve your mood and give you more energy throughout the day.
2. Exercise regularly
Regular exercise helps reduce stress and improves self-esteem. It also increases blood flow, relieves tension, and boosts immunity. At least two and a half hours of moderate aerobic activity weekly is required.
This includes 30 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity every other day. For example, brisk walking counts as moderate physical activity, while jogging or swimming is considered vigorous. You can find out about some more fitness tips for dads.
3. Eat well
A balanced diet full of seasonal whole grains, fruits, and vegetables is important for overall health. Eating right means eating foods rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber.
These nutrients provide energy and keep your immune system strong. They also protect against heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Try to eat five servings of fruit and three servings of veggies each day.
4. Avoid smoking
Smoking is unhealthy for your lungs, heart, and brain. It causes cancer, impairs lung function, and weakens bones. Quitting smoking is one of the best ways to boost your mental health.
5. Manage your anger
Anger is a strong emotion that manifests in all of us from time to time. However, when anger becomes chronic, it can cause serious problems.
Anger management techniques include:
- Recognizing what triggers your anger
- Learning how to control your temper
- Developing healthy coping strategies to deal with stressful situations.
6. Be positive
Positive thinking has been proven to have many benefits. Being optimistic about the future could help you live longer, happier lives.
Studies show people who think positively tend to experience fewer illnesses than those who focus on negative thoughts. Also, they tend to recover faster from illness. Positive thinkers are less likely to suffer from depression and anxiety.
7. Relax and breath
Relaxation exercises such as tai chi, meditation, and yoga can help relieve stress. Stressful events and difficult emotions can leave you feeling anxious. By taking some time out to relax, you’ll be able to handle these feelings better.
8. Take breaks
Stress often leads to burnout. Burnout happens when you become overwhelmed by work and responsibilities. Taking regular breaks can prevent burnout and allow you to recharge. Make sure to take breaks during the day to avoid becoming overworked.
Also, in addition to taking breaks, you should buy gifts for yourself, take yourself out, and practice self-care.
9. Spend time with your kids
There are so many emotional benefits that comes from spending quality time with your children. The more time you spend with your kids, the better at fathering you will be. Your self-esteem will improve, the bond between your kids will grow stronger, and engaging in activities with them will boost your mood.
10. Communicate with your partner
Another useful mental health tip for dads is to maintain and regularly communicate with their partner. Dads should be comfortable with their partners and discuss issues with them. Connect, talk, listen, ask questions and find out what each other really needs. It will put you at ease as a handle your role as a dad.