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In the rush of looking after your family, meeting your work requirements, and getting things done, it’s easy to neglect your own well-being. These websites, apps, and social accounts will ensure you remember to take care of yourself.
Even five minutes of self-care is enough to make a big difference in how you feel. Whether it’s a reminder to take a break from work or an uplifting message that puts you in a positive frame of mind, there’s something for everyone here.
Teeny Breaks (Web, Chrome): How to Take Science-Backed Mindful Breaks
Mindfulness sounds simple, but it’s difficult to practice. In essence, it is going out of your auto-pilot mode and noticing, really noticing, every single thing you are doing. Teeny Breaks shows you a mindful way to take a healthy break.
Available as a website or a productivity-focused New Tab extension for Chrome, Teeny Breaks gives you a new suggestion every time you access it. These suggestions are science-backed tricks to improve your health, such as doing a 2-minute burst of physical activity to improve your focus and short-term memory. Each tip includes a citation so you can read more about how effective it is.
Teeny Breaks doesn’t teach mindfulness itself, instead it tells you to be mindful during your breaks instead of letting your mind drift. If you want to learn mindfulness, try the best mindful meditation apps to get started.
Download: Teeny Breaks for Chrome (Free)
@TinyCareBot (Twitter): Short, Helpful Reminders on Twitter
?: please remember to take time to ask for help if you need it
— here's your reminder (@tinycarebot) November 20, 2018
It’s no secret that social media can have adverse effects on your mental health. But it’s not all bad. Accounts like @TinyCareBot put a positive spin on how social accounts can affect you.
The bot sends a tweet every few hours that encourages a healthy habit of some sort. Some examples include reminders to drink water or eat something nutritious, focussing on a few deep breaths, or that it’s okay to ask people for help when you need it. These are the kinds of small daily reminders that can turn a bad day into a good day.
Apart from @TinyCareBot, there are other similar ways to use social media positively. For example, you can follow celebrities who inspire you to take care of your mental health. Don’t mock these small steps, they all add up.
Simple Reminders (Facebook, Instagram): Inspiring Breaks In Social Feeds
View this post on Instagram
Beating yourself up over every perceived mistake is the work of an internal abuser who must be restrained and reformed. — Bryant McGill? ? @BryantMcGill @GoMcGill @JenniYoungMcGill #SimpleReminders #inspiration #quotes #words #hurt #pain #growth #change #strength #courage
There are plenty of studies that prove that Facebook makes you sad, but dumping it altogether isn’t an option either. So how do you combat it? For starters, try subscribing to self-caring accounts like Simple Reminders.
The website has social accounts on both Facebook and Instagram with the kind of motivational posters you are probably used to seeing by now. But these regular updates in your feed can actually have a positive effect on your outlook, especially when the rest of the feed is filled with things that make you a little world-weary.
Granted, some of the messages on Simple Reminders are corny. But hey, different people need different kinds of encouragement and inspiration.
Good Blocks (Android, iOS): Positive Self-Esteem Reinforcement Game
Whenever you take a break from your chores, treat yourself with a pick-me-up game of Good Blocks. Designed by a clinical psychologist, this game uses cognitive behavioral therapy and other mind hacks to defeat everyday negativity.
The game is pretty simple. It shows you bad thoughts and good thoughts. Swipe the bad thoughts away from you, i.e. to the top of the screen or to either side. Swipe the good thoughts towards you, i.e. down to yourself. It’s a game of positive reinforcement that helps with self-esteem.
The idea is that playing the game trains your mind to reject negative self-image thoughts when they come up, and truly accept positive thoughts.
Apart from Good Blocks, you can also check out some other games to understand and cope with depression.
Reboot (Web): Forced Break From Screens
Reboot eschews reminders and instead uses forced compliance. If you don’t do what the app says, you’re in trouble. But this is how your break should be if you spend too much time at your computer screen.
Whenever you want to relieve eye-strain caused by computers, head to Reboot. On the web app, choose how many minutes you want to take a break for: two, three, or five. Once you start the break, you aren’t allowed to do anything. If you move the cursor or press a key, the timer will restart and you have to begin your break all over.
It’s an effective way to ensure that when you are trying to take a break from work, you also take a break from the screen, instead of browsing social media. And since it doesn’t have a reminder, maybe you can install one of the Chrome extensions to stay healthy at your desk, which usually have reminders to prevent eye-strain.
Instant Shots of Happiness
Constant nudges of such positive and healthy reminders can help you maintain a good outlook towards life. In a busy day full of challenges, one of these messages or games can stop you from spiraling into negative thoughts.
But sometimes, you need a little more than a nudge. If you’re already down in the doldrums, these tools might not help. Then, turn to something that gives you an instant shot of happiness.