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Looking after our own mental health

We all have mental health just like we have physical health and it’s important that we take steps to look after it.

The following steps, known as the ‘five ways to wellbeing’, are easy and can be incorporated into our daily lives almost straight away.

  • Connect
  • Be active
  • Take notice
  • Keep learning
  • Give

If you're struggling, it’s really important you reach out and talk to your family and friends and connect with them. Starting the conversation around mental health and wellbeing and opening up to someone can really help you. Help and support is available, both in your local area and online or by telephone. 

Mental Health And Wellbeing Support Is Available

Good relationships are important for your mental wellbeing. They can help you to build a sense of belonging and self-worth, give you an opportunity to share positive experiences, provide emotional support, and allow you to support others.

With this in mind, why not try to do something different today and make a connection:

  • Talk to someone face to face or on the phone rather than by text or email
  • Speak to someone new
  • Run an errand for a neighbour or friend
  • Try ditching the digital devices for an evening
  • Join a local book club, evening class, or other shared activity
  • Ask someone how they are and really listen when they tell you
Be active

Evidence shows that improvements in your physical health can help improve your mental health. It doesn't have to be strenuous - finding a physical activity you enjoy can really boost your mood.

If you fancy trying something new, here are some links to give you some ideas:

  • Active Barnsley - aims to help all Barnsley residents to have the opportunity to be more physically active.
  • Reds in the Community - delivers community and charitable activities on behalf of Barnsley Football Club, to engage and improve the lives of local people. 
  • Walking In Barnsley - walking is a great form of exercise and also good for your mental and emotional wellbeing too and if you join a group, you can also meet new people so it’s a win-win. 
  • What’s Your Move – helps Barnsley to be more active for good physical and mental health.
Be active
Take notice
Take notice

Being aware of the present moment and your own feelings and thoughts can help you to positively change how you’re feeling. This is also known as mindfulness and it can really help you to be calm and more able to deal with what life might throw at you.

Take some time to enjoy the moment and the environment around you. Here are a few ideas:

  • Visit your local park 
  • Have a ‘clear the clutter’ day
  • Take a different route on your journey to or from work, the school run, or to the shops
  • Visit a new place
  • Try meditating or guided relaxation - there are free apps you can use to help with this
  • Focus on your breathing and relax your muscles
Keep learning

Setting goals, being open to new ideas, and continuing to learn throughout life helps increase wellbeing and build resilience. Learning new skills can boost confidence and give you a sense of achievement. It doesn’t have to be formal or about getting a qualification or grade. It could be anything from picking up a book, doing a crossword, or researching something you’re curious about.

Why not learn something new today? Here are a few ideas:


Giving to others has a positive impact on your mental health. Being kind and giving help to others can give you a sense of purpose and make you feel happier and more satisfied with your life. All acts of kindness can really help increase your wellbeing, whether it's a small act like having a cup of tea with your neighbour, to a large act like volunteering in your local community. 

Here are some local volunteering opportunities:

Registered address:

10th floor, Gateway Plaza, off Sackville St, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S70 2RD

Berneslai Homes Limited is a company controlled by Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council. A company limited by guarantee, registered in England and Wales, number 4548803