Rebuilding Your Daily Routine After Suffering From A Mental Illness


 I thought today's post would be an excellent follow-up to my recent post, Regaining your sense of purpose after suffering from a mental illness. Today's post is going to be all about how you can rebuild your daily routine. When you're in the midst of depression for example, it can seem like the structure of your day ceases to exist. But when you begin to feel better, where do you go from there? It's understandable why you might be feeling a bit lost and a bit stuck on what to do with yourself. 

quote board and laptop
Photo by Emma Matthews Digital Content Production on Unsplash

I've been in this position myself up until fairly recently: I would either be at appointments or I'd be in bed, there was little in between for me. Now that my appointments are reducing in frequency, and I no longer wish to spend all day in bed (yay), I feel like I've got to fill my day with other things.

In my opinion, this is where the recovery gets quite difficult, you're left to your own devices to rebuild a life that best aligns with you, but it's so important to build this structure into our day as without it, we may end up feeling like all there is to do is go back to bed.

So, here's my ways to help rebuild your daily routine after suffering from a mental illness:

Set an alarm.

It's an obvious one, but waking up at a certain time each day is so important as it helps us sleep better the next night. 

Get up and dressed, regardless of if you're just staying home all day:

I find getting up and dressed and doing my make up each day actually makes me want to do more with my day. 

Have a morning routine:

When you wake up, make sure you have a set morning routine to follow. This ensures you have a great start to your day and you could also use it as an opportunity to build better habits, like drinking a glass of water to improve brain function or not getting yourself down by scrolling your phone on Instagram first thing. 

Break up your day:

Doing the same thing for hours on end will only make you feel bored, tired and possibly restless. Breaking up your day into different activities ensures you're kept occupied all day.

Go outside:

Even if it's just to have your morning coffee and to watch the sunrise, if you're up that early. Getting outside is proven to boost your mood, helps ground you and also helps break up your day a bit. You could try going for a walk in nature for twenty minutes.

Get moving:

When you feel your mood start to dip, which it might do, the best piece of advice I have is get moving. Whether it's a home workout or going for a walk, it'll perk your mood back up. 

Start a journal:

If writing is your thing, or even if you think it isn't, starting a journal has proven health benefits like decreasing stress and can help you work through your emotions/thoughts/feelings and any problems you may be having. Sometimes, seeing it all down on paper can really help your mind to process and work through things, which is why I recommend when rebuilding your daily routine, you should start a journal. You can read about the four things I learnt in 30 days of journaling here to see how it could help you.

Set aside time to relax and practise self-care:

Sometimes when we start to feel better from a mental illness, we can be tempted to push ourselves too hard and to possibly make up for lost time, so make sure you set aside time to relax, pursue your hobbies and practise a bit of self-care. You can read my guide to self care for more information. 

Practise sleep hygiene:

Practising sleep hygiene involves practising good habits that ensure you get a good night's rest. Simple things like not going on your phone at a certain time before you go to sleep and having a set time in which you go to bed. Having a good night's sleep is the foundation of ensuring you have a good day.

So those are my tips for rebuilding your daily routine. Hope this helped.

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  1. Glad to hear you're starting to feel stronger! I find that just getting up, ready and dressed makes all the difference!

    Katie |

  2. This is great advice. Nothing helps me to center myself and find peace the way that nature does. When I'm struggling, I know that it's time to plan a hike or a camping trip. I need to escape the world and just be in that moment.

  3. This is great advice, glad to hear you're trying to get back to normal. I think having a routine is so important, even if you don't necessarily have a lot to fill the day - trying to do certain things at set times really helps shape the day. I definitely benefit from moving when I'm in a negative head space too x


  4. This is such an important post, and it's so important to return to a "normal" routine if you're experiencing mental health issues, or even if you're just trying to keep yourself on the right path. Thank you for being so open, all the best x

  5. This post is so important, thank you for spreading awareness and offering tips!

  6. This was so useful! I'm at a point where I'm struggling right now but needing some kind of structure to pull myself out of this slump, and this has some really useful tips, especially getting moving. Thanks!

    Lindsey |

  7. Great ideas! I always find that getting dressed makes me a lot more productive for the rest of the day as well!

  8. Great advice, Beth! I do most of these, but it's still hard to find a meaning to my own existence when I feel so empty. Perhaps I should do more journaling, and more gratitude journaling, too.
    Love your blog. :)

    Luana |

  9. This is really informative. As silly as it sounds, as someone who has struggled with mental health, getting dressed is the most important thing on that list! Oh my god it makes such a difference. Thank you for sharing!

  10. Glad to hear that you're feeling a lot better! This is an amazing start to anyone rebuilding themselves after suffering a low point in their illness. Thankful that more people are talking about it and giving awareness about mental illness a platform!


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