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Mental Health Tips & Activities for Your Family

Mental Health Tips & Activities for Your Family

black girl writing in journal on floor

Mental Health is important every day and all year long; however, May is Children's Mental Health Awareness Month and we've put something special together for our patients and families!

Check out our Mental Health Tips & Activities Calendar below. Go through the entire month of tips or choose a few to try any day or any time of year!

Click to open larger and print.

may mental health tips and activities calendar 2024 image


Below are more details and links to items mentioned in the Mental Health Activity Calendar above. 


May 1 -  Journaling has been shown to have many different benefits- from reduced stress and anxiety to improved mood and memory. Writing down thoughts can also help with problem solving, communication and creativity. There is also some evidence that writing about emotions can help with physical health.  

So take out some paper or open a blank document and start the first mental health activity of the month.  Unsure of what to write?  Here are some ideas/ journal prompts.


May 2 - Controlled Breathing is the first step for most relaxation techniques. As with journaling, it is something that can help with both physical and mental health.  This can be done anywhere, but best start in a place where you are comfortable-  sit on a chair or cross-legged on the ground. Close your eyes and let your hand rest on your thighs. Plan to practice this for approximately 10 minutes

Inhale slowly through your nose and concentrate on your breath filling up your lungs and on feeling your abdomen expanding. Then exhale slowly

Find your breathing pace and count so you are inhaling to the count of 4 and exhaling to the count of 8 (or 6 if that is too much)

If any other thoughts come into your mind, just go back to focusing on breathing and counting

Other techniques for breathing:


May 3 - Turn off screens 30 minutes earlier before bed than usual. Take that time to read a book, listen to an audiobook or music, practice controlled breathing again, or talk with someone who makes you feel good.


Weekend 1 - Avoid shifting your sleep schedule by more than 1 hour this weekend – wake up and go to sleep no later than your usual wake up time during the week. Aim to wake up with good energy today. The average sleep duration requirement for school aged children is 9 to11 hours. Teenagers should get 8 to 10 hours per night, and adults need approximately 7-9 hours of sleep.


May 6 - Start your week with positive self talk. What are you grateful for today? Say or write down (in your journal) 3 positive things in your life.


May 7 - Drink more water.  Dehydration has been linked to increased stress levels. Carrying a water bottle with you can be helpful as a reminder.


May 9 - Controlled breathing with visualization.


Weekend 2 - Do something active outside. Even if it is only for 10 minutes, spending time doing a physical activity outside and in nature can be helpful. If it is raining or you can’t go outside, then try to move more when you are sitting down by taking breaks- do some stretching, see how long you can hold a plank or a wall sit.


May 16 - Mindfulness is a type of meditative practice that is all about being in the moment. A lot of stress stems from fretting about the past or worrying about the future. Mindfulness forces us to be fully present in the here and now.



Weekend 3 - Walking Meditation


May 23 - Controlled breathing with progressive muscle relaxation


May 30 - Color Visualization with Controlled Breathing


As always, we are here for you if you have any additional questions or concerns.

If your child is showing signs of anxiety or depression, call us to make an appointment with your provider.


If you believe your family member has a medical or psychiatric emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital.

In addition, here are some Crisis Hotline contacts:

  • 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline - Call or text 988, anywhere in the US, to chat with a caring counselor.
  • National Suicide Prevention Hotline (24/7) 1.800.273.8255 
  • Anne Arundel County Crisis Response System 410.768.5522 
  • Maryland Crisis Youth Hotline 1.800.422.0009 
  • AACPS Student Safety Hotline 1.877.676.9854