wellness

Let’s talk about Mental Health

Is it just me, or is everyone talking about their mental health lately? Recently I have seen a surge of people using social media to express their struggles with depression, anxiety, addiction, among others. But I clearly remember when not too long ago we would only hear about celebrities and their mental problems only when they were getting DUI’s, shaving their heads… never in a good light and always being judged. My best bet is that social media allows people to be so open and transparent, even with the possibility of being judged (helloooo trolls), that celebs have decided why not share this other side which is also very important, not everything is pink, bubbly, and perfect.

AND IT IS ABOUT TIME!

For far too long people with mental health problems have had to hide their struggles for fear of being judged. The stigma that comes with admitting that you have to visit a psychologist or psychiatrist is HUGE and it helps that people in social media have decided to take a stand and talk about it. It’s not about glamorizing mental health, au contraire, it’s about shedding light into something so common that everyone should be aware of and have no fear to talk about!

Mental health has also taken the TV world by storm with the recent Netflix hit 13 Reasons Why which showcases the struggles teenagers endure during high school. All the drama, the cliques, but most importantly the BULLYING. Bullying is a very important topic that needs to be addressed in schools and at home. Watching this show has made everyone aware that parents don’t really have a clue of what goes on in their kids’ lives! This show has done a great job at getting people to TALK about mental health and TAKE ACTION. Bullying is one of the many causes of depression in teenagers, and as we know, depression can sometimes lead to suicidal ideas and even attempts. The show has been heavily criticized for glamorizing suicide, showing explicit ways to take your life, and not actually talking about the underlying problems that build up to a person deciding to take their lives, BUT at the same time we have to be thankful for shows like this that get the conversation going.

This may seem like a venting session, but it’s not. As a future mental health professional, and it being Mental Health Awareness Month, I feel very passionate about these issues and extremely proud of everyone that has come out with their personal struggles with depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety, among many others. I am also very excited about the future! We have finally begun an open and judgment-free conversation on mental health!

Visiting a shrink should bring no shame to people. It’s just like going to the doctor for the common cold. Your brain can have a chemical imbalance, life circumstances can mess you up, LIFE HAPPENS! And all you have to do is seek out help, otherwise the odds of ending up worse than you are right now are extremely high.

Anyways, to close this session LOL, Mental Health Awareness Month should be everyday! Let’s keep the conversation going!

N

5 Ways to Feel Less Stressed

Personally I am always on the lookout for ways to feel less stressed. Medical school is a stress-inducing environment and one should look for healthy ways to cope, otherwise you crash and burn. Food is always a tasty safety net to fall into but not the healthiest one since we tend to reach out for sugary treats that give a nice rush. But this nasty habit comes with extra pounds, a muffin top and self-esteem going down the drain. So along the past 4 years I’ve experimented with various ways to de-stress, and so far this is what has worked:

Write notes | Making lists is a must if you want to get stuff done efficiently. But what is really important is to prioritize in these lists because there are things that, believe it or not, CAN wait. Not everything must be done in one day, and this is something I’m still working on because us type A’s tend to be very obsessive about certain things. Also, before taking all your worries into bed try making a list of things you are thinking about and stuff you have to do so you avoid a bout of insomnia.

Get an oil diffuser | For years and years the benefits of aromatherapy have been discussed. I don’t know if you are a skeptic or a believer but let me tell you, it works wonders. Lavender is one of the most popular oils. I’ve used it to go to tranquil sleep and also to quiet down my speedy brain. Peppermint is refreshing; it alleviates congestion and helps improve mood. Chamomile is great to calm you down after a hectic day and it is a well-known mood lifter.

Turn up the volume | Most people think that to relax everything has to be calm and silent but that is not true. Music has the ability to change your mood, calm you down, its just a matter of choosing the right kind of music. You can find many playlists on Spotify that provide nature sounds, like rain or the waves at the beach which provide relaxing background music to your day.

Bake | This is a personal favorite of mine, and I don’t know if it is relaxing for anyone else, but I love to bake. Baking gives me ME-time and lets me create a delicious treat for me and my friends. You can find 5 ingredients recipes that are easy to make online and on Pinterest. You can also go to the Life-Batter section of the blog or follow our Life-Batter board on Pinterest for some inspiration : )

Coloring | Lately there has been a boom in adult coloring books. There are many variations, those with complicated designs and many with mandalas for relaxation. I’ve used Enchanted Forest and it is awesome. Head to Amazon to get a copy.

What are some ways you unwind?
Share in the comments below!

-N

5 Products for the Perfect Facial at Home


Every once in a while it is NECESSARY to find a way to unwind. Maybe you’ve had a rough week at work, relationship troubles, or any situation that has stressed you out; more than enough reasons to spend a night in shut-down mode.

I am a fan of going to the spa, getting a facial, massage and just being pampered but, I am sure we can all agree that sometimes it can get quite expensive, and some other things top the list of what to spend our money on. Being the DIY-er that I am, I have spent a long time trying to perfect the most soothing spa experience I can get at home while trying to stay on budget. I have provided you a list of products that work wonders on the skin. It may seem expensive the first time you get these items but in the long run it saves many spa visits and dollars, because most of these items can be used more than once.

ONE TWO THREE FOUR FIVE BONUS1 BONUS2


DIY Facial-At-Home

 

First step, put some relaxing music. You can find playlists on Spotify or Amazon Prime with rainfall and soothing, acoustic music. Make sure no one will be bothering you for the next hour : ) If you happen to have an oil diffuser at home, I suggest using lavender essential oils to make the environment even more relaxing. You can also light a few lavender-scented candles if you don’t have an oil diffuser, plus it helps get some mood-lighting.

You should begin your spa day by using the Sephora Collection Almond Foot Mask. The packaging says you should use it for 20 minutes but I’ve noticed that the longer you use it the better the results so I recommend keeping the Foot Mask booties on for the duration of the spa experience.

Now, you will begin the facial by cleansing your face of impurities. I recommend using the Ole Henriksen The Clean Truth Foaming Cleanser. It has a citrus type of scent and leaves your skin feeling very clean and soft, and it isn’t drying! Next you can use a warm towel, or if you have a facial sauna at home, to open up your pores and get them ready for the next step. After that, you will apply the Boscia Luminizing Black Mask. This is a peel-off mask that brings out impurities and cleans out clogged pores. Plus it gives great satisfaction to peel-off this baby haha. You will leave the mask on for about 25 – 30 minutes, making sure that it is dry prior to removing. Following the mask removal, I recommend using the Kate Somerville 2 minute Hollywood Facial. This peel is infused with papaya and pineapple enzymes, as well as Lactic Acid and in 2 minutes it exfoliates and leaves you with a glowing and healthier looking complexion. I do warn you that it might sting a bit but it will be over before you know it. If it seems like too much for your skin, or if your skin is sensitive, just leave it on for 1 minute. The next step involves some vitamin C brought to you by Drunk Elephant’s C-Firma Day Serum. This little baby is the most expensive of the bunch but it works wonders. This potent serum is packed with antioxidants that help to visibly reduce dark spots and wrinkles for brighter skin. And at last you can’t forget to moisturize! Your face has been through a lot today so it is necessary to keep it moisturized, as well as to use a moisturizer every day. I recommend to finish off this facial with the Sephora Collection Rose Sleeping Mask. It is very moisturizing without leaving a greasy appearance and you can put it in the fridge prior to using so you get an extra cooling sensation at the end of your facial. Once you face is ready, put on the Sephora Collection Avocado Hand Mask to nourish and repair your hands.

Do you have any preferred products for a facial at home? Share in the comments below.
-N

*I might get a share if you click on the links in this post*