Mental health is a great leveller—we all experience moments of struggle, regardless of where we come from. One of the lessons we all have to learn in the stress-filled modern world, is how to balance and boost our mental wellbeing. If you find yourself in need of a helping hand today, Kendall Jenner has opened up about her own battle with anxiety—and how she goes about easing it—on Instagram.
“My anxiety (especially social anxiety) has been on 100 lately,” she wrote on a post of a short video clip of a tranquil courtyard. “I’ve come to a place where I don’t feel bad about it. I love my space and my alone time. I am finding ways to help me start my day off with a calmer, more positive mindset.”
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The key to addressing stress and anxiety is to switch off the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for fight or flight mode (causing stress and anxiety), and to turn the parasympathetic nervous system—which is responsible for calm mode—on. There are myriad different ways to do this, but Jenner’s own morning habits are a good place to start.
She begins the day by performing 10 deep inhales and exhales, making sure to do this before going near her phone. Breathwork, and particularly slowing down your exhalation, is an excellent way to induce calm. Following this up by going outdoors and journalling, as Jenner does, is even better. The benefits of the great outdoors have been scientifically proven to make us happier and improve overall emotional wellbeing, and there’s a reason why forest bathing is so popular.
Jenner also practices gratitude—writing down all the things that you’re grateful for—another habit that is scientifically proven to boost mood.
While she called it spreading the “good vibes”, Jenner’s honesty is notable—not least because she has 228 million followers who look up to her. In fact, she joins fellow supermodel, Bella Hadid, in talking candidly about her mental health. Hadid posted a series of photographs of herself crying in November, admitting that she was “not sure why, but it feels harder and harder to not share my truth on here”. Whatever your mental health issue, the message is clear: it helps to talk about it.
This story originally appeared in British Vogue.