Many of the taboos that surround mental health issues have been ushered out of relevance in recent years with the help of events such as World Mental Health Day.

Sustaining your mental health is just as important to your overall wellbeing as your physical health is. That’s why you should take the time to build habits that foster a positive mentality and keep you at your best.

So, to celebrate World Mental Health Day on 10 October, read about five simple techniques you can use to maintain a healthy mind.

1. Get plenty of regular exercise

It’s well-understood that regular exercise keeps your body healthy, but you may be less aware of the ways it can benefit your mind.

A study available on the National Library of Medicine found that getting active on a regular basis can reduce mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.

Similarly, as mentioned by Harvard Medicine Publishing, one of the reasons regular exercise boosts your mental health is the release of biological “feel-good” chemicals in your brain, called endorphins. Similarly, it explains how cortisol – a chemical that contributes to stress – is reduced under the effects of regular exercise.

So, taking advantage of the brain’s natural reaction to physical exercise is a simple way you can maintain good mental health. In fact, it’s reported by HelpGuide that just one hour of walking or 15 minutes of running each day can reduce the risk of major depression by 26%.

Moderate exercise is recommended for most people and includes any activity that makes you breathe more heavily without losing your breath, while also increasing your temperature without causing excessive sweating.

Make sure you don’t overlook the utility that regular exercise can have towards improving or maintaining your mental health, especially when something as simple as a 15-minute run can make a real difference.

2. Eat a healthy diet

In order to perform the many tasks that you face throughout the day, the brain requires fuel in the form of the food we eat. But more importantly, that food needs to be of sufficient nutritional quality, especially for supporting your mental health.

The Mental Health Foundation reports how eating a balanced diet that includes vegetables and other foods rich in nutrients can have a positive impact on your mood and wellbeing. A healthy diet can improve your mood, give you more energy, and help you to think clearly.

On the other hand, an unhealthy diet can lead to mental and physical fatigue and impaired decision-making, which could leave you feeling unmotivated and far from your best.

The advice on what constitutes an optimal diet changes constantly, but some main components of a healthy diet will typically include:


  • Staying hydrated throughout the day
  • Making sure you have breakfast
  • Maintaining balanced sugar levels (which means avoiding food with a volatile effect on blood sugar levels like sweets, chocolate, and sugary drinks)
  • Eating regularly in small portions (foods with slow-release energy like pasta, rice, oats, and cereals are good for this)
  • Getting a balance of food groups in your diet.


Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is also an important part of a healthy diet, as they contain vitamins and minerals that are hard to source from elsewhere.

Going straight to the source and eating natural foods like this can have a positive effect on your overall mental wellbeing.

3. Consider mindfulness techniques, such as meditation

Practising mindfulness techniques is a simple way to slow things down, ignore the outside world, and decompress.

Meditation is a great option for this, as it essentially puts you into a deep state of relaxation. There are lots of different methods of meditation with varying types of benefits – some aim to improve your empathy towards people, while other types can aid self-acceptance and help you become more confident in yourself.

The benefits of mindfulness techniques can sometimes be viewed as quite mystifying, but there are tangible advantages to it:


  • Meditation can reduce mood-altering, inflammatory chemicals such as cytokine
  • It can decrease cortisol levels, the hormone associated with stress
  • Stress-related ailments such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and ADHD are also believed to benefit from the calming activity.


A study reported by Healthline found that people who meditated experienced fewer negative thoughts when shown a negative image, compared to those who did not meditate.

The same research also discovered that, after using a mindfulness app for two weeks, the 153 adults involved in the study reported fewer feelings of loneliness and had increased social contact – proving that these techniques can have real-world advantages for your mental health.

In its most rudimentary form, meditating only requires a quiet atmosphere and a comfortable place to sit. So, almost anyone can do it – even from your living room!

There are also many meditation and mindfulness apps, such as Headspace and Calm, which you can use to help you ease into a more relaxed state.

4. Regularly socialise

At our core, humans are social animals. You’re simply hardwired to find enjoyment or seek comfort in the company of others. Socialising or spending time in a group satisfies our primal desire to fit in with people and be accepted.

Spending time with others is a great way to maintain your mental health as it can be done in whichever way works for you. If playing golf is how you like to socialise, you can increase your well-being by getting 18 holes in with a friend. Likewise, if you enjoy a trip to a café for a cup of tea, do that instead.

It has been scientifically proven to boost your mental health, too. reports that social support increases levels of oxytocin in the body, a chemical that can reduce feelings of anxiety and help create a sense of calm.

Spend time with people whose company you enjoy, and you’ll likely feel the benefits for your mental health.

5. Learn a new skill

Learning a new skill or picking up a new hobby are useful ways to keep your mind active and boost your cognitive ability.

The NHS reports that picking up a new skill can improve your mental wellbeing in ways such as:


  • Boosting your self-confidence and self-esteem
  • Helping to build yourself a sense of purpose
  • Connecting you with others.


These skills or activities don’t have to be extremely challenging. Many of the benefits of learning new skills come from the added confidence your newly acquired knowledge grants you.

As well as this, having something to work towards that you’re motivated to constantly improve can give your life a broader sense of meaning. This can provide the distraction from everyday life’s mundanity, decreasing your levels of stress.

In fact, Upskilled reports that learning new skills can release dopamine into the brain – a chemical associated with rewards that can make us feel better. This can boost your immunity while also increasing energy levels, having an overall positive effect on your mental health.

Speak to us

One element that shouldn’t be a cause of any mental health issues is your financial situation. So, if you’d like help managing your money from an experienced financial planner, please speak to us today at Cordiner Wealth.

Email or call 0113 262 1242 to get in touch.