Nicola Sturgeon has revealed how she copes with pressure, as she urged people to take steps to look after their mental health.
Marking the start of Mental Health Awareness Week on Monday, the First Minister tackled the campaign’s theme of stress.
In a column in the Sunday Mail, she wrote: “It’s important we are open about stress and mental health.”
She also revealed how she turns to her favoured pastime of reading to unwind from the pressure.
She wrote: “Even if I am only able to take a short time out to read a few pages, reading provides a break from work that allows me to wind down and to immerse myself in different worlds.
“And taking a break like that means I focus better when I pick up my Government papers again or go into a debate.”
She encouraged people to use the awareness week “to look at what it is in their life that makes them feel overwhelmed” and how they manage stress.
She added: “I’m making my own commitment to try to be more active. It’s not always easy for me to do but a walk is a great way not just to keep fit but to get some fresh air and take time out from the daily pressures of life.”
Ms Sturgeon stressed that anyone worried about their mental health should seek help via their doctor, NHS 24, or helplines such as Breathing Space on 0800 83 85 87 or the Samaritans on 116 123.