A handy person never leaves behind his toolkit of important things he might need to fix things around the house. This toolkit could contain screwdrivers, pliers, wrenches, hammers, or measuring tools like rulers. All these things help the handy person make repairs and maintenance easier and more efficient, allowing for a more functional and comfortable living space.
A mental health toolkit is similar to a regular toolkit that a handy person might use to fix things around the house in that it is a collection of resources and strategies that can be used to address specific mental health needs. Just as a regular toolkit might contain different tools for different types of repairs, a mental health toolkit may contain different resources for different mental health and well-being aspects.
Your mental health toolkit should contain:
Self-care habits: These are activities that nurture your well-being and bring you joy and relaxation. Take some time to understand what makes you feel comforted or soothes your senses so that you have the right self-care activities and lean more into your hobbies. The most basic forms of self-care that should be in your toolkit every day are healthy nutrition, exercise, hydration, rest, and sleep.
Coping strategies: These are techniques you can use to manage difficult emotions or situations. Life is full of many triggers and a bad day starts at any time something goes wrong. When you have a go-to coping strategy, you’re able to respond to situations instead of reacting which leaves you more level-headed and calmer. Examples include deep breathing, mindfulness, and positive distractions. Read our blog post on 5 easy mindfulness activities, you can do from anywhere.
Tools for tracking your mental health: They can be an important resource for monitoring your emotional state, identifying patterns and triggers, and tracking progress toward your mental health goals. By tracking your mental health, you can gain insight into your emotional well-being, identify areas of improvement, and take steps to address any issues that arise. Using tracking tools can also help you stay accountable and motivated as you can see your progress over time. You might consider sharing your tracking data with your therapist as this can help them better understand your needs and tailor treatment to your situation. These tools can include mood-tracking apps, mood journals, sleep trackers, and physical activity trackers. A great resource is our GabbyCares Life Planner Journal with prompts to explore your heart, mind, and emotions.
Inspirational material or go-to positive affirmations. These can be incredibly powerful tools for improving your mental health and well-being that can help you tap into your inner strength and find motivation and inspiration when you're feeling down or discouraged. Inspirational material might include things like motivational speeches, uplifting songs or inspiring books, quotes, or articles. Positive affirmations, on the other hand, are statements that you repeat to yourself to help build self-esteem and confidence. Some examples might include "I am capable of handling whatever comes my way," "I am worthy of love and respect," or "I am strong and resilient." By repeating these affirmations regularly, you can begin to believe them on a deeper level and use them to counteract negative self-talk and self-doubt.
A list of emergency contacts. These are phone numbers of trusted friends and family that you can reach out to when you need help or you’re in a mental health crisis. Also, include the contact information for your therapist as well as the phone numbers for local mental health clinics or support groups. The National Suicide & Crisis Lifeline is 988. It’s also important to know the emergency services in your area like your local police department, fire department, or emergency medical services. Anything can happen at any time so always be armed with contacts you might need. Having these resources on hand can help you feel more in control during difficult times and make it easier to access the support you need to care for your mental health. Remember, it's okay to reach out for help when you need it and there are people and resources available to support you.
Creating your mental health toolkit takes a great deal of self-awareness and reflection and we’re here to guide you through that process. Contact us today and we'll discuss your needs as well as answer any questions you might have about cost, length of treatment, and coordinating services.
We treat these common concerns:
Anxiety and Phobias
Difficulties with Self-Esteem
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
College/Graduate School Issues
Medical and Health Concerns
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)
Gender Identity Support
Grief, Loss, or Bereavement