Skip to Content
UW Health SMPH
American Family Children's Hospital

Question 7

7. Do you have a plan for activities that promote positive mental health?
To promote positive mental health, there are many things that you can do. Here are lists of activities that may help you promote positive mental health. My discharge information (pdf) has more details and tips to help you manage stress.
Food and Drink 
  • Avoid sugar, caffeine, chocolate, nicotine, fats and alcohol.
  • Notice if eating or drinking certain things changes how you feel.
  • Make eating pleasant. Go on a picnic and invite a friend to join you.
  • Choose your favorite foods. 
Sleep and Rest 
  • Your body needs about eight hours of sleep per day.
  • Always sleep or rest when needed.
  • After eight hours of sleep, get up and take care of yourself. 
Exercise and Activity 
  • Go outside and enjoy fresh air.
  • If it is a sunny day, close your eyes for a moment and let the sunlight warm your eyelids.
  • Get some exercise while you're out. Play sports, garden, go for a walk or ride a bike. 
  • Sing or listen to your favorite songs.
  • Relax in a warm, soapy tub.
  • Play on the computer.
  • Watch a comedy or a funny video.
  • Buy or pick some flowers. Relax and look at them.
  • Get a pet. 
Reading and Writing 
  • Keep a journal.
  • Keep a list of goals. Do one task at a time. Celebrate your accomplishments.
  • Read books, magazines, newspapers and comics. 
Being with Others 
  • Find people. If that is not practical, then call them on the phone. 
  • Listen to a meditation tape.
  • Pick a small, easy task like washing the dishes. Let it be meditation.
  • Play or connect with your spiritual higher being for comfort and strength. 
Keeping a Balance 
  • Feeling better takes time. Don't overdo it or get upset if your mood does not greatly improve.
  • Be patient with yourself. Set reasonable goals. Break a large task into many smaller ones.
  • If you are anxious and avoiding something, try to get some support to face it.
  • Don't get upset if your mood does not greatly improve right away.
  • Don't make any major life decisions while you are depressed.