As we head into another weekend, what chores do you have on your mind that need to get done? Does the lawn need mowing? Weeds whacking? Do window’s washing or a new piece of furniture need to get put together? For me it’s the fish tank.
If you’ve kept up, I started keeping an aquarium at around year twenty of this pandemic and it’s been going great! I learned though that my fish are happiest (and let’s be honest, alive) when I keep up with their regular maintenance. Every week I clean their tank and do a partial water change. I check the ammonia, nitrate, Ph, nitrites and acidity. I vacuum the gravel, and clean the filter when needed. Is this the most fun? No. Is it stinky and a bit grimy? Yes. But is it necessary if I want a healthy fishy ecosystem – also yes!
More important than a hobby aquarium is our mental health. We need to do regular maintenance on IT to keep our mental systems healthy and happy. Often times when we are working on our mental health and putting in the tough hours of self-improvement we see results. How about that!
But then when we get to that place where we’re doing better we think we’re done and those skills we had been using go to the wayside. We’re doing so “fine” we forget to do the things that got us to “fine” in the first place. Meditations become less frequent, healthy eating begins to suffer, TV watching increases, social media becomes obsessive.
Getting better doesn’t happen magically, and it doesn’t maintain itself magically. Your mental health may not need the same level of work but it still needs regular check ins. How can you check in with yourself today?