Pancake day is one of the most anticipated days in the calendar, as we get to indulge in tasty pancakes with lots of delicious fillings, whether it be savoury or the good old traditional sweet favourites that include; sugar and lemon, maple syrup or banana chopped up and drizzled in warm melted Nutella.
It doesn’t matter what age you are, everyone loves a pancake! But did you know that Pancake day can be great for your mental health? Preparing, cooking and sitting down together as a family to enjoy eating a meal can have a hugely positive impact on a child’s mental and physical health. From deciding on your favourite fillings, to making the batter and having a go at tossing the pancake and catching it again without dropping it on the floor!!! Making pancakes is very much an activity that brings families together as it’s a fun activity and everyone likes to get involved in the making and eating!
There are 5 fundamental steps to your overall positive mental wellbeing that make you feel balanced and happy. These steps are;
CONNECT – As human beings we are programmed to be social and it is really important for us to build connections with people to feel loved and supported so you feel richer and more fulfilled. Making pancakes is very much a social activity from start to finish as it’s often seen as a fun activity to do with friends, family and loved ones.
BE ACTIVE – There is much research done to back the strong positive connection between physical activity and mental health. If you can, why not walk to the local shops to buy your ingredients, or see how many times you can walk around the kitchen table flipping your pancake in the pan. There are many places around the UK that hold annual pancake flipping races which are always fun to take part in.
TAKE NOTICE – In todays world we get easily distracted with technology and often forget to paying attention to our surroundings as we are so engrossed in watching something on social media or playing with an app. When making pancakes, you need to focus on what you are doing to make the perfect pancakes paying attention to using the right amount of ingredients and making sure your pancake doesn’t stick to the pan!
KEEP LEARNING – It is so important to keep learning as it keeps your mind stimulated and helps to reduce the chance of any mental health issues in later life. So this pancake day, if you have never made a pancake before, learn how to make them. Pancakes are so versatile you can get creative and try out different fillings or experiment with making a different batter. Swapping the traditional eggs, milk and flour for mashed banana, ground almonds, designated coconut and almond milk can make a really delicious alternative that will wow your family and friends!
GIVE – The feeling you get from doing a selfless act and giving your time to help someone is invaluable. Not only does it make a HUGE positive difference to the person that you are helping, but it makes you feel all warm, cosy and wonderful inside!
This pancake day do something nice for someone. Maybe you could offer to make the pancakes for your family or a friend. You could offer to go get the groceries and pancake ingredients for an elderly neighbour and even offer to make them a pancake or three!
Small selfless actions can make a huge positive impact on not only the people you are helping, but also yourself.
So when you sit around the table with your family this evening and enjoy your delicious pancakes, reflect on the five steps to wellbeing and see how many you have have ticked off the list today, and been key ingredients in making you feel happy. Hopefully you have made some fun memories to tell your friends at school and you have bonded with your family, friends or loved ones.
If you feel you need to reach out to someone to talk about your feelings or any concerns you may have, remember you are never alone. Our team at Compass Changing Lives are here to help you find your way to wellbeing.