4 Things That Getting Outside Taught Me When It Comes To Mental Health & Confidence
I realise the title of this blog post is somewhat strange because we all have to go outside, don't we? So let me explain a little further, last year I made a really big effort to just get outside and not outside to a city to go shopping but outside to go for a walk. And when I think about this now it's so funny to me that it's something I enjoy so much now. Because when I was a kid my parents would always want to go out for a walk and I would hate it, I used to dread it so much. But as I've grown up and stopped being such a bratty teenager I've loved getting out more and more but it wasn't until the last year that I really started to understand the importance of it. And due to having the flu and not being able to really leave the house it made realise just how much getting outside not only means to me but how much it's taught to me too. So I thought I'd share some of those lessons with you today...
you're one small human
In 2016, I went through a really nasty bout of depression and if you struggle at all with your mental health then you will know that it can make you feel like everything revolves around you. You believe that everyone is thinking about you in the worst way possible and if you leave the house then everybody is staring at you. And it's never the case, you're one small human being in a world where there are 7.4 billion other people, we're a blip. It's something that sounds negative and cruel, of course, we all matter and have great value but it's really good to have perspective on these things. Getting outside when I was particularly low helped me realise this as obviously to us our problems feel like they're taking over but in reality, they never are. The more that I stayed in, even though I'm a serious homebody the more the little things became into huge life ruining things. When out especially other people it really helped me realise that we're all just getting on with life, we all have our own problems and are just trying to navigate our way through the best we can.
no one cares about what you're wearing or if you're wearing makeup
This one is just to do with the blogging world really and as much as I adore and love this not so little online world we're in. We do tend to pay a lot of attention to what other people are wearing and how they physically look. Which isn't always a bad thing because I love style and looking at the way that people present themselves to the world as I find it absolutely fascinating. But it's so easy to get caught up and consumed and become obsessed with how we look and what we are wearing, spending hours agonising over the smallest details and that's no fun. When you're outside and doing your own thing no-one cares what you look like and even if they do you're never going to know what they think so it doesn't matter. The most important thing is that you feel good, that's the only thing that should ever matter.
small talk can go a long way
Naturally, I'm a shy person and I'm pretty reserved. In large social situations, I'm always the one who shrinks away and always feel super awkward speaking out. But when it comes to smiling or saying good morning when out on a walk I always make sure I do so. It's not hard and sometimes it means that you strike up a conversation and learn some really fascinating things that you might not have ever known otherwise. And you never know what that persons life is like, they might live alone and not really talk to anybody else all day so giving somebody that time is such a lovely thing to do. It's something that I've noticed so much more now I've got a dog of my own but it forces you to talk to people, especially when your dogs want to play and if you take the same route you generally tend to meet the same people and form a relationship. I know whenever I've spoken to somebody really kind and friendly it makes my day and it's something that's so easy to do.
for some it's truly life changing
When you have such a healthy relationship with something it's all too easy to think that others feel the same way and it's hard to believe it when they don't. Getting outside on a nearly daily basis is something that changed my life, it sounds so dramatic but it did. I'm a still an anxious over thinker who dwells on really small things for far too long but that only takes up about 20% of my day rather than the 75% that it used to when I wouldn't really go out and just stay in. Because I absolutely adore staying inside, it's something that makes me super happy and I'm a true homebody but it's like they say too much of a good thing is never good. So I have to get outside, to take care of myself and maybe it sounds silly but when I'm out it's like a huge pressure has been lifted off me, I feel like I can properly breath and anything that is going on in my life doesn't feel anywhere near intense. I know it's something that is recommended to so many people who struggle with mental health and going for a walk is not going to cure anything but I am a big believer that sometimes it can really help, not all the time but some.
Do you have a similar relationship to me when it comes to getting outside or are you a homebody for life?