We invest time, effort and money into our work, wardrobes, meals, homes, family… but when was the last time you made a chunky deposit in the Bank of YOU?
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, one in five Australian women experience “very high levels” of psychological distress. And this is despite the reduction in social stigma around mental health and the increase in public discussions in recent years.
As a woman, your sense of empowerment is intertwined with your mental health – a dependency dynamic that Kate Spade New York has identified.
“The foundational role that mental health plays in a woman’s life and in women’s empowerment has only become more clear”, shared Liz Fraser, Kate Spade New York Chief Executive Officer and Brand President.
So why are so many women still combating extreme stress on the daily?
Well, there’s no quick fix to achieving balance and mental wellbeing. Rather, a string of guidelines to re-interpret through the lens of your own personal circumstances and personality.
Consider the advice like an item of clothing: Try it on. Decide if the colour works for you, if the sizing is correct, and if you like the style. Make a few tweaks here and there and you may just land on your perfect ‘self-investment’ fit…
1. Invest In Yourself Physically
It’s well-known that physical and mental health are intrinsically linked. Exercise releases endorphins within the body which are proven to boost positive emotion.
A large international study found that individuals were at a 15 per cent reduced risk of developing depression if they exercised consistently. And that means any type of exercise, not just the kind you’re “supposed” to enjoy, like running or going to the gym. The best type of exercise is the exercise you will stick to, so throw the rulebook out the window and move in the way you want to.
Women experience significant physical changes throughout their life, from puberty and periods to pregnancy, childbirth and menopause, so it’s crucial to remain physically active to navigate these transitions and safeguard your mental health.
Be proactive in your own physical health, take control and feel empowered.
2. Invest In A Circle Of Trust
Women tend to invest a lot in relationships with their children, partner and parents. That social connection and bond is super-important for everyone, but … providing a high level of support and care for others can often leave you neglecting yourself. It’s essential to have a team of trusted people around who can support you, too. A non-judgmental best friend, a trusted work colleague, a laugh-a-minute powerwalking mate…. add to cart!
Research by the Australian & New Zealand Journal of Psychiatry found that having solid relationships in your life can act as a “social cure for psychological ill-health”, so establishing a circle of trust is definitely in your best interest. Keep in mind that this may involve removing unhealthy relationships alongside cultivating joyful ones.
Kate Spade New York and its Social Impact Council—a group of women’s empowerment and mental health leaders from around the globe—has created a social media series to recognise women who have positively influenced their lives, sparking a conversation around the impact that even the simplest of gestures can have on one’s mental health journey.
3. Invest In Having Fun
Women often engage in many roles at the one time — work, domestic jobs, caring for children or family members… The mental load contending with all of this can be exhausting, so invest in time where you can decompress and have fun.
Join a fun online group, start painting, put some music on and start dancing… do something that makes you laugh, smile and happy, every day! Even if it’s following @CelesteBarber or @Milliegram on Instagram for a quick giggle.
And if you can fit in ‘real life’ experiences, even better. You’ll get an endorphine boost of the social-kind, too. According to Head to Health, an Australian Government Department of Health initiative, individuals who participate in recreational activities are less likely to suffer from stress and low mood. After an exceptionally challenging couple of years, we all could do with a little boost and investing in fun could be just the ticket.
Investing time in fun activities will help you tackle everyday tasks with enthusiasm and strengthen your sense of empowerment. It’s a win-win!
Brought to you by Kate Spade.
Kate Spade New York is passionate about elevating female empowerment and donates $2M annually to mental health programs. Striving forward with their mission, their Social Impact Council was born; a team of leading women advocates that will work together to provide resources and communicate the critical role mental health plays on the empowerment of women around the globe. To learn more about Kate Spade New York’s existing social impact work and non-profit partners visit katespade.com/social impact.