Why going to the hairdresser is good for well-being and mental health

First work and obligations, and later free time care for oneself. It’s something cultural and we perceive it as something logical and normal, which is why we always tend to transfer this area of ​​life to “when there’s time”: ‘If I have time, I’ll find a friend’, ‘if I have time I’ll go get a ride. ..

But really ours free time and self-care are more important than we think for our benefit and mental health. And therefore, better performance of work and better solving of daily tasks and obligations.

“Actually, it shouldn’t be called leisure because it seems to be something secondary, it should be called what it is: essential activities for our life, for our physical and mental health,” he tells laSexta.com Santiago Cid, psychologist and director of the center that bears his name: Center for Psychology Santiago Cid (Madrid).

We must keep in mind – adds this expert – that our very nature requires the fulfillment of essential activities such as, for example, hang out, something we include in part of our free time. For example, meeting a friend for coffee or a neighbor for a short walk. We are social beings too.

It’s true that as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, things have changed the world – and the world – and we now place a much higher priority on mental health. And the data leave no room for doubt: according to IPSOSfrom 2020 mental health concerns in Spain increased by 19 points.

However, according to the figures he published V Study on health and lifestyle Aegóna, published at the end of September this year, found that 30.8% of Spaniards felt that their mental health had worsened in the last 12 months, and only 11.3% indicated an improvement in their mental health.

In addition, and according to this paper, almost 90% of those surveyed said they suffered from some symptoms of depression and anxiety in the last year and both in probable cases of anxiety and depression in the last year.

Don’t think of core activities as “extras”

It is important that we have time for ourselves every day. “Every day should have a dose of satisfaction and provide us with essential activities: socializing, sports, healthy nutrition, time for harmonizing business and family life and time for beware and bewareCid advises.

And many times we start from work, instead of starting from those essential activities, that is, from all those things that we have to do because they are key to good health and well-being, and therefore to the ability to work better.

“Because even if we have incredible success in business and good income, if we devote all our time to work, probably because of the loss of balance that free time and basic activities imply, because we forget everything that is humancan end with some psychological disorder such as anxiety on depression“, claims Cid. For this reason – he insists – “we cannot do without these activities, it is important that they are in our central axis”.

Another concept that is being worked on a lot in queries now is the “pause”, something that also applies in the thoroughnessand which we can apply within our own work: “Even though we are working, I have to give my brain breaks: about 5 minutes to go to the toilet, to go eat something, to talk to a colleague, even to listen to a song… It’s about we give the brain a break to re-perform and re-focus on our task,” explains Cid.

Free time doesn’t have to be “productive”

Let’s imagine the scene. A friend asks us: what did you do this weekend? “Well, nothing productive, really. I was watching the show and laying on the couch all weekend.” When we were actually doing something we might have needed: resting and watching a series we liked.

And it’s true that, as Cid explains, “on a societal level, we feel that everything we do, including free time, must be ‘productive.'” We don’t really know why, but it seems we must always be creating or cultivating ourselves. ok, but we also need that time to rest and take care of yourself. Seeing a series we like is a pleasure.

For example, that weekend where you say you “didn’t do anything”, in reality “what you did” was: put on a face mask, take a relaxing bath, relax on the sofa you should have and talk on the phone with a member for a long time family or friend. So you were aware of your self-care and socialized by talking to that person you love.

It is important to pay attention “We cannot always create“, claims Cid. Well, we must not forget that “in reality, the brain is a muscle and if we always, always produce, we exhaust it. And if the brain does not rest, we cause exhaustion that can lead to stress or anxiety problems,” concludes the expert. And as we explain here: too much stress affects health.

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