A Therapist’s Mental Health Routine

Most therapists don’t let you in on their personal lives (for professional boundaries and ethical reasons), but I figure, hey, why not let a therapist tell you a little bit about their own mental health routine?

The World Health Organization defines mental health as ‘a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.’

How beautiful! The thing is, we aren’t naturally in a state of well-being where we realize our own potential, etc. etc. We have to actually try if we’re going to be the healthiest version of ourselves.

Upon some self-reflection, I’ve realized there are some things I take part in on a daily, weekly, and annual basis that help me put myself in an increased state of well-being.

My mind, body, and spirit are connected in so many ways. If engage in one physical act of self-care, let’s say, drinking water, I will also likely experience mental and emotional health as well. While none of these items are an end to themselves, they each have multiple health benefits.

Daily

At home:

  • Having slow mornings: breakfast, journaling, sitting outside

  • Staying compliant with my medications

  • Listening to interesting podcasts

  • Journaling or drawing

  • Walking my dog

  • Meditating or practicing yoga

  • Eating at least one thing green (because, sorry, most veggies are gross)

At work:

  • Pausing 1-5 minutes before responding to an email

  • Drinking water/tea

  • Stretching or mild exercise between clients

  • Everything goes on my calendar. Every. Thing.

Weekly/Bi-monthly

  • Attending personal therapy

  • Unfollowing people/pages on social media who cause…spontaneous aggravation

  • Pulling some weeds, or planting something

  • Hanging out with friends who I can be open and honest with

  • Having an ongoing 500+ piece puzzle on the coffee table when I get home from work

Annually

  • Visiting my primary care doctor & staying up-to-date with medications

  • Taking ample vacation time

Here’s the thing: I’m not strict when it comes to doing these things. I’m still not great about getting consistent sleep, moving my body when I need to, or saying no when chips are around. But I’ve noticed that my trajectory over the years has started propelling me in a direction of health, when I take part in these practices.

I’m still a person worthy of love and respect if I don’t participate in them, but I really don’t feel like myself, and am not at my full potential when I don’t.

What does your mental health routine look like?


Roubicek & Thacker Counseling is Fresno’s premier provider of individual, couples, family, and group therapy. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.