Mental Health Awareness week: Take notice

Enhance your wellbeing with our top 10 ways to take notice! 

by Beth Robinson, Senior Resident

The phrase ‘take notice’ refers to ways you can be aware of what is taking place in the present. Savouring the moment. Broadening your awareness of your surroundings and taking the time to enjoy the environment around you. Whilst the phrase ‘enjoying the environment’ can illicit images of pretty plants and natural reservoirs, taking notice doesn’t have to be all about sunshine and rainbows – in fact it can be done anywhere (I know my environment is revising in my room 50% of the time right now…). Taking notice has been linked to not only wellbeing, but being able to make positive choices based on your own values. Here’s 10 practical ways you can take notice today, in a variety of different environments!  

  • Be aware of how the people around you are feeling or acting. This can be family, friends, colleagues etc. and can help to reflect on how you interact with the relationships you have with others. 
  • Take a different route to somewhere you usually go and notice any interesting changes you see – perhaps some will evoke meaning, and others be cool differences! 
  • Have a de-clutter day. Whether that’s going full on Marie Kondo, reorganizing your bookshelf or doing some laundry, making your space a little less cluttered can have a big impact.
  • Take a quick break wherever you are to spend a few minutes identifying 5 things you can see; 4 things you can touch; 3 things you can hear; 2 things you can smell and 1 thing you can taste.  
  • Take a photo and focus on capturing what is in front of you, for example the shape of a flower, or how the texture might feel. 
  • Take a short walk, and see the walk ‘through new eyes’. Instead of merely going from point A to B, walk on purpose. 
  • Write down 5 things you’re grateful for – again, another good strategy for some self-reflection. This is a great thing to add to a Bullet Journal, a tool I frequently use and would recommend to anyone – all you need is a notebook and pen to get started. 
  • Put on some music that usually makes you feel happy, and actively listen to it. Notice what happens when you do – does your body feel relaxed? Does it feel different to just focus on the music and nothing else? How does it feel afterwards? 
  • Make a change to your digital environment – change your phone background to something you’ll notice every day (maybe an inspirational quote or work you like from a small artist?), or download an eco-friendly web browser such as Ecosia! 
  • Practice Mindfulness – Remember, you don’t notice how much you don’t notice until you start noticing the things you have not been noticing

Check out the UoB What’s on page to find out what’s on. Notice the beautiful city you live in at our upcoming Draw Together afternoons, book your place now!

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