Taking care of your mental health is an essential part of overall health and wellbeing. Not only does it affect how you think, feel, and act, but it also determines how you handle challenges, relate to others, and make healthy choices. Just as you take care of your body by eating right and exercising, it is important to make the time and take steps to care for your mental health.
- Eat healthy, well-balanced meals. The food you eat has a direct effect on your energy levels and mood. Choose whole foods that give your body steady energy from healthy sources of nutrition and help your mind feel good.
- Exercise regularly. Regular physical activity improves physical and mental health. It helps to reduce tension and stress, increase physical and emotional energy, improve sleep, and increase sense of wellbeing.
- Avoid the use of tobacco products and choose not to drink alcohol. Smoking and drinking can be linked to a range of mental health issues from feelings of depression and anxiety, to memory loss, and insomnia.
- Get plenty of sleep. Quality sleep improves energy, memory, focus, learning ability, and mental and emotional resilience. Prioritize good sleep hygiene to optimize your sleep each night.
- Take steps to manage stress. Set goals and priorities and learn to say no if requests are putting you into overload. Explore stress coping techniques such deep-breathing, stretching, or meditation. Make time to unwind and schedule healthy and relaxing activities you enjoy.
- Connect with others. Stay connected with your community, faith-based organizations, or people you trust about your concerns and who can provide you with emotional and social support.
- Seek help when you need it. The Department of Homeland Security provides readily available tools and resources to support you if you or someone you care about are struggling with issues related to mental health. If you are struggling or in crisis, there are steps you can take to seek help.
Your Employee Assistance Program is Here to Support
Your Component Employee Assistance Program (EAP) can help strengthen your coping skills and is a good first call for any questions or concerns you have about your mental health or the mental health of someone you care about. EAP provides you and your eligible household members with free and confidential support for a wide array of personal challenges.
EAP assistance is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. For more information, contact your Component EAP. For more information on employee resources, please contact email@example.com.
Below is a list of tools and resources available to you and your loved ones:
- Your Component EAP
- 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline
- Veterans Affairs National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and the Veterans Crisis Line
- U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs mobile apps
- DHS-Columbia Protocol App
- Federal Employees Health Benefits Program
- DHS Components with Peer Support Programs