As we go about our daily lives, the stress from our duties and responsibilities can take a toll on our mental health. Just how our moods fluctuate throughout the day, our mental well-being also changes in times of stress and hardship.
Our mental health is important and vital. By looking after it, we can feel happier, more positive, and better equipped to get the most out of life. Cognitive, behavioral, and emotional aspects are all included in mental health, which comes down to how people act, feel, and think. Daily life, relationships, and physical health can all be impacted by poor mental health.
This connection, nevertheless, also functions the other way around. Disruptions in mental health can be caused by personal characteristics, interpersonal interactions, and physical reasons.
Simple Things That Nurture Mental Health
Everyone should ideally invest in their mental health and well-being. It's not something you should put off till you are depressed, stressed out, or anxious. The following six ways can help foster your mental health and well-being, whether you are struggling or feeling well:
1) Quality Sleep
The importance of getting enough sleep cannot be overstated for both physical and mental well-being. Our ability to recover from mental effort is aided by the rest we get while we sleep. As lack of sleep and poor mental health are inextricably linked, having good slumber helps us feel our best the next day.
Good mental health and sleep have significant benefits. Good sleep not only elevates our spirit and makes us happier, but it also lowers our vulnerability to sadness and anxiety.
Compared to when we are exhausted and unmotivated, which can result in a high level of stress, we are more likely to feel fulfilled in our social and professional obligations when we are well-rested.
2) Building Routine
Building a routine or schedule can sound dated or even militaristic, especially if you are studying or working for long hours.
Setting up a routine, though, enables you to pack your day with beneficial rituals that eventually become habits. That requires less mental effort and will power to accomplish various goals and leaves more brain space for other ideas and chores (especially creative ones).
Additionally, as creative activities need less concentration to accomplish, our habits are what we turn to when we are overwhelmed. So let's start establishing a good routine.
Connect with those around you - family, friends, colleagues, or even neighbors. Look to spend meaningful time with people each day. These conversations don't have to be long.
According to research, staying connected can boost mood and enhance mental health. Instead of sending an email, talk to someone. These connections can become the cornerstones of your life. By investing time in and strengthening them, you can support and enrich yourself every day.
4) Practice Gratitude
There are many things we take for granted in our life, like food, shelter, and even waking up in the morning. While it may sound like these are all very obvious things that happen, it's very easy for us to forget to appreciate them.
Sometimes, you may only express gratitude when you get your dream job or get a perfect test score. Yet, we are often ungrateful and gloomy when times are tough or when we are thinking about things that we don't have. However, the reality is that there is always something to be grateful for.
Studies show that people who practice gratitude are happier and less prone to depression. Making a habit out of counting your blessings can have a great impact on your attitude, self-esteem, outlook on life, and mental wellness.
Exercise has been proven in numerous studies to boost mood just as effectively as anti-depressants, which often come with many negative effects.
Simply moving your body may be immensely beneficial, as it releases feel-good endorphins, supports neurological development, reduces inflammation, and improves sleep. The best part is that you don't have to be a gym junkie to get all these benefits.
Find a form of movement that works for you
It's important to choose an activity that fits your lifestyle, something you can do frequently and genuinely enjoy doing. Choose mild, restorative exercise, such as yoga, walking, tai chi, or swimming to assist hormonal balance if you have a hectic and stressful schedule.
6) Managing your Feelings
When you are extremely agitated, it can be difficult to function normally, work, relax, study, sleep, or interact with other people. While many of us are aware when we are irritated, there are others how are not. Is it loneliness, wrath, humiliation, fear, or any other emotion? Sometimes we can't explain why we're feeling a certain way.
Giving our feelings the attention they deserve without passing judgment or telling ourselves we're weak or foolish to feel the way we do can frequently be helpful. Doing that could seem awkward and uneasy. However, we can improve with time.
It could be time to seek professional assistance if you've consistently worked to improve your mental and emotional well-being but are still struggling to perform at your best at work, home, or in your relationships.
You will benefit from taking these self-help measures. In reality, though, advice from an expert can help you take better care of yourself.
Janvi Kapur is a counselor with a Master's degree in applied psychology, with a specialization in clinical psychology.