Top three causes identified as lack of sleep, juggling family life, and a looming to-do list.

Shubham Ghosh

New research released this week reveals almost 6 in 10 South Asians regularly experience anxiety (57%).

Despite Sunday being the traditional day of rest and recreation for most, as the weekend draws to a close, many begin to worry about the week ahead with lack of sleep (57%), juggling family life (57%) and a looming to-do list (54%) reported as the top causes.

For many people around the country, a typical weekend ends with worry as thoughts turn to the week ahead; with Google searches around sadness spiking on a Sunday as people turn to the internet for help. Searches for ‘trouble sleeping’ also peak on a Monday, reflecting the nation’s struggle to unwind as the weekend draws to a close.

In fact, searches for anxiety have increased 170% in the last 10 year.

Leading South Asian influencers and mental health advocates, including Parle Patel, Dr Tina Mistry and Ummar Sadique are supporting the Better Health – Every Mind Matters campaign, calling on the South Asian community to adopt Self Care Sundays to help deal with feelings of anxiety by doing small things that can make a big difference.

Despite a significant number of South Asians regularly experiencing anxiety (57%), 1 in 3 (35%) rarely or never prioritise self care on a Sunday. Those that do like to unwind go for a walk (41%), clean their home (39%) and spend time with friends or family (37%).

To address this, Dr Tina Mistry, Ummar Sadique and Parle Patel, who are long-standing advocates for the importance of good mental health, are sharing their tips for alleviating anxiety and preparing for the week ahead.

Parle Patel, Influencer and Comedian, said, “Sundays are a particularly good day to be kind to yourself and get into the right frame of mind for the week ahead. Try adopting a Self Care Sunday routine that works for you – whether that’s mindful breathing exercises in your room or going for a run outdoors. Take time to think about the good things in your life and list the things you’re thankful for. It’s important to speak to someone if you’re struggling.”

Dr Tina Mistry, Clinical Psychologist, said, “Stress is the body’s reaction to feeling threatened or under pressure. It’s very common and can affect our mood, our body, and our relationships – especially when it feels out of our control. Try keeping a diary of what you are doing and how you are feeling at different times of the day to help identify what’s causing you anxiety – this will help you create simple steps to better manage it.”

Ummar Sadique, Senior Psychological Well-being Practitioner, said: “Trying to relax and enjoy the last few moments of the weekend on a Sunday can quickly become stressful, especially when you can’t help but worry about the week ahead! For me, reviewing my to-do list and breaking down my biggest tasks into smaller, easier-to-manage chunks really helps. Making a plan for managing upcoming stressful days or events can really help.”

Delivered by the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, the Better Health – Every Mind Matters campaign encourages people to be kind to their mind and help deal with feelings of anxiety by doing small things that can make a big difference. The website offers a Mind Plan quiz, which delivers a free personalised mental health action plan with practical tips to help you deal with anxiety, stress, low mood, and trouble sleeping, plus lots more simple, but effective, NHS-approved tips and guides.

Search Every Mind Matters for ways to be kind to your mind with a free, personalised Mind Plan. Amazon Alexa users in the UK can simply say “Alexa, start my Mind Plan” for help today.

Social media: #everymindmatters #mentalhealth #selfcaresundays / @NHS

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