Mental health is a blanket term that is used to describe thoughts and actions that surround your state of mind and your psychological processing. Poor mental health can lead to major mental health problems such as anxiety, depression, increased stress, and even suicidal thoughts in some cases.
Prioritizing your mental health and working to improve it is vital if you want to improve your overall well-being and are looking to be the best you that you can be.
Before we take a look at tips and techniques that you can implement to improve your mental health, let’s first take a better look at the term and understand what the actual definition is.
Mental Health Definition
According to Merriam-Webster, mental health is “the condition of being sound mentally and emotionally that is characterized by the absence of mental illness and by adequate adjustment especially as reflected in feeling comfortable about oneself, positive feelings about others, and the ability to meet the demands of daily life.”
Being able to achieve positive mental health will help you improve at everything you do. You will feel more comfortable in social situations and relationships, you will feel more confident in a professional setting, and you will be more secure emotionally.
Improving your mental health is something that you can do that will truly impact every aspect of your life and lead to improved overall well-being.
But how do you do that?
How to Improve Mental Health
If there are things that you can do to improve your mental health, you’ve come to the right place. There are dozens of things that you can start implementing today that will help improve your mental and emotional situation tomorrow.
Here are three easy techniques that you can begin at any moment:
I know, I know. This one seems a bit obvious. But it is obvious for a reason.
Meditation is one of the most effective things that you can do to improve your mental health and increase awareness of your thoughts and actions. Meditative techniques begin with simple breathing exercises in which you focus on the here and the now and being present in the moment. From there it will evolve to become more complex, but that is for a later date.
Meditation is an easy way to get started on improving your mental health, but it will do more than that. Studies have shown that meditation can have profound effects on your physical health as well. It has been shown to improve cardiovascular health, reception to pain, irritable bowel syndrome, and more. Along with this it holds obvious benefits in the mental health space and can help you manage and improve symptoms related to depression and anxiety.
If you are looking for ways that you can start with meditation, there are tons of free YouTube videos and apps available to help you take the jump.
Improve Your Diet
This is one thing that is often overlooked, but what you put into your body is essential to your physical and mental health. And if you choose to eat and drink unhealthy, it only leads to an unhealthy state of body and state of mind.
In fact, one study found that diets high in sugary drinks and foods was associated with higher rates of depression. Meanwhile, eating a more balanced, nutrient rich diet can have the opposite effects. According to The Mental Health Foundation, the Mediterranean diet, one of the healthiest diets on the planet, was shown to actually reduce depression in those who followed the diet’s guidelines.
Look, if you are making a change in your diet, you don’t have to give up everything you like. Have a candy bar every once in a while, drink a soda when you go out to eat. The point is to just be aware of what you are putting into your body and make a conscious effort to make a change. Who knows? Maybe after making this change for a period of time, you will learn that you no longer like those high-sugar products that you once enjoyed.
Diet can go a long way to improve your physical and mental health, but exercising will help you take it one step farther, literally.
Whether you are joining a gym, mountain biking, hiking, or just going on a brisk walk around the neighborhood, getting up and getting out can help you improve physical physique and enhance your mental health.
In fact, studies have shown that people who exercise, even moderate-intensity workouts, saw improved results in mental health categories including depression.
With all this said, sometimes the problem can be too much to overcome on your own. In some cases, it is best to seek out the help of someone whose job it is to help you.
Seek Professional Help in Some Cases
At The Wellness Committee, we understand that mental health is a serious issue and, in some cases, it’s just not that easy to simply get up and go on a walk to solve your issue. Believe us, we’ve been there.
If your problem is severe and you are having major health problems in regards to your mental health, maybe even suicidal thoughts, it is vital that you seek out a mental health therapist as soon as possible.
Finding someone who is clinically trained to help you with your disorder, whatever that may be, can help you conquer the problem and come out on the other side stronger than where you once were.
Starting A Mental Health Schedule
You may have been here before. Reading a blog or new article about mental health and said to yourself, “I’m going to do it, I’m going to make that change.”
Yet here you are, reading another blog article.
Taking the first step in a new lifestyle can be the hardest thing to do. Your stepping out of your comfort zone into a territory that you are slightly or completely unfamiliar with.
This is okay. In fact, this might be a good thing.
It is good to try new things and to step out of your comfort zone. You want to be able to look back at yourself and say, “I did that. I made that change.”
Still, where do you begin?
One of the best plans of action when it comes to making changes like this is to start small and progress slowly. That may feel counterintuitive and you may want to just dive in, but this can cause you to feel overwhelmed and make you fatigued.
Just make your efforts intentional and controlled. If you are wanting to exercise, start with a short walk and transition to a long walk, to a short run, and so on and so forth.
It is important to be realistic with what you want to do and where you want to go. And, look, even if you start small you are still making that change, you are still putting an effort in to make your mental health a priority, something that you perhaps weren’t doing before.
“The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now.” – Chinese Proverb
What is The Wellness Elephant?
The Wellness Elephant is a community that is dedicated to being your go-to educational center for all things wellness and mental health related. We work to bring information to the public that will help improve your physical and mental health with the end goal of creating an environment that has improved well-being.
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