We know that we need to do things every day to take care of our physical health, like brushing our teeth or eating our greens. Sometimes it’s harder to take the same approach with our mental health.

Just as a car needs regular maintenance and fuel top-ups to keep running, we need to take time to relax, recharge and take care of our emotional wellbeing. This can help keep us feel healthier and put energy back in the tank.

The coronavirus pandemic has had an impact on everyone’s daily lives. We’ve had to adapt to a new way of living and deal with more uncertainty and less social contact. In these difficult times it’s never been more important to take steps to look after your emotional and physical health. Building in time each week for self-care can help us to maintain our sense of wellbeing and cope better with life’s challenges.

Activities we do to look after our physical and emotional health are often known as self-care. Self-care isn’t a luxury or something fluffy and it doesn’t have to cost lots of money. Developing self-care habits can help you to maintain and nourish your sense of wellness. It could also help you be more productive and cope better with life’s ups and downs.

Complete the #MindWellMOT checklist

The #MindWellMOT checklist can help you to think about your personal wellbeing needs.

Set your own goals

Once you’ve completed the #MindWellMOT checklist take a few minutes to set some personal goals using the MindWell self-care goal-setter.

Moving more, eating a healthy diet, sleeping well and taking time to relax can all help to reduce the effects of stress and help you to feel stronger.

Remember it’s better to start small in your troublesome areas and work gradually towards permanent change. We’ve created some resources that can help you set goals and find self-care ideas.

Get some ideas

Make a plan

You can then use the planner to build in time each week for your personal self-care priorities.

Many of us use digital devices to diary in events, but you might be more likely to stick to your intentions if you write them down. You can print out our planner, fill it in and pin it somewhere you can see it, like your fridge or by your desk at work. You can always use your phone to give you reminders as well.

It might feel like there’s never a good time to start. There are always so many things to do each day. So why not just start now?