We all have days when our mind isn’t behaving quite as we’d like it to, and some of us have more ups and downs with our wellbeing and mental health than others – it’s something most of us need to be more on top of.
Today I’m giving my top pick of websites and apps which can help you keep your mind in tip-top condition day-to-day, and help you out when you or someone you care about is struggling.
I’ve picked them simply because I use them myself and, for me, they work. I use them each for different reasons but a big part of it has to be the way they’re written to reach out to their audience in their own voice.
For information about mental health conditions, I always turn to Mind. Whether it’s to help me with my own wellbeing or to understand the mental health challenges being faced by loved ones, I know I can trust what they say. They work alongside people with lived experience of mental health conditions too, so you know you’re getting the best information possible.
For bringing a bit of calm and clarity to your day, I can’t recommend Headspace enough. This is a website and app that help you learn mindfulness in a way that’s easy, accessible and straightforward. The idea is that you take 10 minutes a day to do their mindfulness exercise. If you want to you can pay for access to longer or more focused sessions, but you don’t have to. What makes it perfect for me is that it’s meditation but without any of the trimmings you might think meditation comes with – no chanting, no incense, no crystals. Just simple ideas, explained clearly. Perfect.
For words of encouragement when things are tough and you need them most, The Blurt Foundation is the best I’ve found. I first heard about their Buddy Boxes which you can order to be delivered on a monthly basis, or as a one off treat. I’ll be honest, I’ve never ordered one so I can’t vouch for the boxes (although lots of people online rave about them). What I can’t praise enough though are the emails they send you every week or so if you sign up for their self care starter kit. If you’re feeling down they make you feel that you’re not alone and that you have someone in your corner who understands. For a mass produced email that’s pretty impressive.
For getting yourself into new habits that will help you stay healthy all-round, You-app is your friend. Daily reminders help you get into new habits that you’ve picked, and in an Instagram-esque approach you ‘complete’ each daily action by uploading a photo. If you open your photos to the online community you can share your progress and embed new habits together with people across the globe.
For anyone who is having trouble sleeping, I recommend Sleepio. It brings together all sorts of information and support around sleep problems, promotes ongoing research into those problems, and its website seems to be growing all the time.
One of the most important things we can all do to break the stigma around mental health, and depression in particular, is to talk about it. Join in the conversation online today. #LetsTalk #oktosay
If you are struggling and need to talk to someone right now, Samaritans can help.
Originally published on my previous website on 7/4/2017