What to Expect for Mental Health in April

what to expect for april mental health

Hey everyone! March was certainly a month no one could have predicted and it’s left all of us reeling wondering what’s to come in April. Unfortunately, I don’t have the answers to that but, I can tell you what you might expect for your mental health! Hint: it’ll be ups and downs as usual. The spring and changes in daylight apparently do a number on our bodies and minds.

Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or mental health professional. I’m sharing what I’ve researched and my own experiences with you! Always do your own research and speak with a mental health expert!

april mental health

What to Expect for February Mental Health

bouquet effect

Who else is glad January is over? It’s one of those months that only exists because it has to. February is a little better in that it’s a month full of pink, chocolate, and a ground hog that may or may not see it’s shadow (but he’s the cutest thing ever!). None the less, it’s a month that can also drag on and on. Winter, although beautiful in it’s own right, is not my favorite season for mental health reasons. It’s just hard! Sunlight is hard to find, coats keep us concealed, and central heating gives us dry skin. I’ll pass. So what can we expect this month in terms of mental health? 

february mental health

Hope for the Coming Weeks

We’re almost half way through winter! Finally. In my opinion, winter starts as soon as Christmas ends. Christmas is really it’s own season. Right around the first week of February however, we start to feel hope! March is just around the corner! The birds will be singing, the earth is starting to wake up again, and Michael’s Craft Store is full of Easter greenery. There is hope indeed! 

Loneliness (Looking at You Valentine’s Day)

Ah, Valentine’s Day. The dreaded holiday of single people. I remember being single not so long ago and thinking the holiday was silly. Even as someone who’s married I still kind of think it is. And as an independent gal, I’ll buy my own flowers and chocolate if I want them! However, for many single people, it can be a really lonely time. It seems like everyone on social media is out on a date and you wonder when it’s going to be your turn. Instead of wallowing in self-pity, take yourself on a date or meet up with some friends. Get the wine and cheeseboard and treat yourself to some roses! I’ve always thought that before you can love someone else, you have to love yourself. 

Stretches of Depression

Even though we can FEEL spring coming, February can still be depressing. Many of us will probably experience a few stretches of depression throughout the month. These are most likely to occur during rainy or snowy weather thanks to the sun hiding behind the clouds. It’s important to go outside and get fresh air in your lungs and take vitamins! Meditation and keeping a journal can also help during this time. 

Seasonal Affective Disorder

Just like in January, this will still be something many people deal with well into February. S.A.D.  impacts mental health as well as physical health at times. The mind-body connection is real people! Since this disorder can be difficult to treat, it’s best to tell your doctor about the symptoms you’re experiencing to know what kind of treatment will be best for you. BUT know that you are not alone in the way you feel. Many, many people understand the feelings of sadness and exhaustion. 

Hibernation Mode

People, like some animals, often feel the need to hibernate this time of the year. The cold and wet conditions tell us we need to stay inside to thrive. Unfortunately, this usually leads to feelings of isolation and exhaustion. The more we stay inside and in bed, the more isolated and tired we feel. Have you ever slept for 11 hours straight? You usually feel like you can sleep even longer. That’s like hibernation, except in humans, it usually just ends in a splitting headache and feeling depressed. Get out of bed and be among people, even if you don’t want to. 

February isn’t always a fun month. But taking care of your mental health is the best way to get through it. My grandmom always used to say “it’s always brighter in the morning,” and the morning will come sooner than you think.

Mental Health During Wedding Planning

Oh. My. Goodness. I am 80-some days away from marrying David and I couldn’t be more excited! It’s really starting to feel REAL. We’ve been engaged since May 2018 and up until now, everything has been about paying for the wedding. But now we’re getting into the details! However, with all the details and exciting moments comes a lot of stress. This brings me right back to mental health. The ups and downs you’ll experience throughout the whole planning process means you’ll really need to be in touch with your mental health. Here’s how I’m learning to do that!

Accept How You Feel

Our hearts can be deceitful, but when your heart and your head are saying the same thing, it’s ok to feel a certain way. For example, when I went for my first dress fitting, I stepped into my gown and didn’t feel so hot. It was too big on me and wasn’t tailored to my body. Then the seamstress suggested I wear a bustier under the dress to keep my stomach tight and everything lifted. I put it on and then got my dress all situated and I felt hot and suffocated. But I still went with her recommendation even though I didn’t like how I looked or felt. Both my heart and my head said this wasn’t a good idea but I felt bad for not wanting to do what was suggested.

So now I have to tell my seamstress that I need an alternative! I didn’t want to accept how I felt because I didn’t think I should be feeling or thinking it. But you know what? I’m allowed to feel and think that an alternative is better. And so are you.

Have Someone to Talk to

Talking to someone about how you feel or what you’re experiencing can be so helpful! Throughout the planning (and paying!) process I’ve desperately needed someone to share my thoughts with. My mom, a coworker, my best friends, and my clinical psychologist have been lifesavers! Find someone you trust to share frustrations, excitement, and worries with in relation to your wedding.

Don’t Constantly Plan

David and I have had over a year to plan our wedding so we were able to take some time off from planning now and then. You will drive yourself crazy if you constantly plan! You need to take a break from it every now and then. David and I have found other things to do together that don’t involve wedding stuff and its really awesome to just live normally for a little while. It’s a good mental break!

Write Down Your Worries and Fears

Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with worry and fear regarding our wedding that I can’t contain it anymore. So I write down what’s troubling me. Sometimes all it takes is a sentence or two, other times its an entire page or more. Writing it down really helps me think through it and verbalize it as well. I think a lot of people can benefit from this practice!


How Anxiety and Depression Can Make You Feel Jealous of Others

rewardstyle wall dallasHey everyone! I’ve been super busy with work and wedding planning but, I want to take some time to talk about a facet of mental health that often gets overlooked- jealousy!! We all feel this from time to time but in my experience, some people (myself included) with depression/anxiety experience it more often than others. Even worse, it can be the cause of anxiety and depression!

The Jealousy Zone

I deal with anxiety and depression constantly and unfortunately those anxious, sad thoughts often push me into the “jealousy zone.” I call it the jealousy zone because my normal state of anxiety/depression just has me worrying about my own problems. For example, worrying about an assignment at work or how I’ll look on my wedding day.

But the jealousy zone is where I’m looking at those around me and finding ways to compare myself to them, particularly other women. This in turn, causes me to be more depressed or anxious. Vicious cycle, right?

The Women I Admire

When I look at women I admire, I wonder why I can’t be as pretty as she is;  I can’t have the nice house like she does; I don’t have the perfect body she does; I don’t have the nice car she does. So on and so forth. I put myself down and if my anxiety is really bad, I find a way to put her down as well. I can’t believe I just admitted that, but its true. I feel like I need to find something to level the playing field. And that fuels my depression and keeps me stuck in the jealousy zone.

How Do I Stop this Vicious Cycle of Jealousy?

For the sake of my own sanity, I went and talked to my therapist about why my anxiety/depression fuels jealousy and vice versa. She said exactly what I thought she would- my self-esteem is the culprit. Crap.

I’ve never had a particularly high opinion of myself and unfortunately it spills into other areas of my life.  I also worry about what others think of me. So to improve every facet of my mental health – anxiety, depression, and self esteem- my therapist suggested I start writing down every compliment I receive throughout the day. She also told me not to brush off a compliment, simply accept it and say thanks.

I’ll admit that this isn’t easy. But seeing the good parts of myself and trying not to deflect nice things people say about me has certainly helped. I feel more positive. I look at the women I admire and tell myself that I’ll have what she does someday or that my future is bright too!

Slowly but surely, my self esteem is improving, my anxiety and depression isn’t so severe, and I’m admiring others without trying to level the playing field. Poor mental health can most certainly contribute to feelings of jealousy, but getting to the root of the jealousy can literally improve mental health! And that’s the perfect way to end the vicious cycle and permanently stay out of the jealousy zone.


How a Morning Mantra Helped My Depression

Mantras have never been my thing. Especially in the morning. I’m barely functioning when I wake up and then have to drive to work, so having a morning mantra to say every day was something I laughed at. For awhile. Then, I needed a change! My depression was coming and going all the time and at random moments that would completely ruin my day. So I decided I needed to do something about it, and a simple mantra was all I needed.

Today will be a good day

My morning mantra is “Today will be a good day.” And it’s really helped set my mind and heart to positive mode for the rest of the day! I’ll be completely honest and say its hard when you’re depressed to even find the energy to say those words. Really hard. But even thinking them at first can be enough to get you going in the right direction!

It took about a week for me to really feel different. But I swear as soon as I started believing my own words, good things started happening. Some were big things and some were little things, but they all made me smile. Sure, my depression still comes and goes so this is by no means a cure all. However, just starting your day in the right place can make those depression swings easier to cope with.

One note: there are two definitions of “mantra.” One has to do with hearing a sound or word repeatedly. My future sister-in-law listens to a mantra on YouTube everyday that has a certain sound frequency. The other definition is what this blog post speaks to, which is a phrase I repeat to myself.

What Should be My Mantra?

It can be anything! I usually ask myself how I want to feel. The answer is usually “happy.” I want to feel happiness during the day. So that’s how I came up with my mantra. You may want to feel confident during the day so yours may look something like “I am beautiful and worth others’ time.”

Having something to remind you of how valuable you are every day sets you up for success. Will it entirely cure your depression? Probably not, but in my experience it’s really helped cope with it and even alleviate some of it.

Reach out if you have questions or would like to share your own mantra!