A person’s overall wellbeing depends on both, physical and mental health. We could be very particular about our physical wellness, but may be ignoring our mental health. While seeking out professional help is one way to promote positive mental health, there are also many other ways which can be adopted and incorporated in our daily lives.
Below are the top ten tips we can follow to building positive mental health and overall wellbeing. Read on:
1. Avoid self-criticism and stay positive
Being positive can build healthy and positive mental health for anyone. Learn to value yourself by avoiding unnecessary criticism and staying positive. Studies have shown that the way in which a person perceives himself can have a significant impact on his mood and feelings. Avoid pessimism about future events and motivate yourself for improvement.
For instance, if you feel that did not perform well at a job interview, do not start bashing yourself and think that you won’t get the job at all. Instead, a better way to think would be that you could have performed better at the interview, and may or may not get the job.
2. Take time out for hobbies
Most of the people today lead extremely hectic lifestyles, juggling between work, study and other responsibilities. This can be pretty stressful and can have a negative impact on mental health. It is essential to take time out for hobbies occasionally.
Moreover, you can take time out for other activities that can relieve stress. Different kind of activities can improve positive mental health. For example, completing a daily crossword puzzle, planting a tree, learning another language or taking lessons to learn a musical instrument.
3. Exercise regularly
Studies have shown that exercise can help alleviate symptoms of depression and anxiety that lead to an overall improvement in mental health. This is because our body releases mood-boosting and stress relieving chemicals called endorphins while and after exercising.
For enjoying the emotional benefits of exercise, try to add at least thirty minutes of exercise into your everyday lifestyle. If this is not possible, you can try to incorporate small activities into your routine, like climbing the stairs instead of taking the elevator or going for short walks. Moreover, when you exercise or spend time outdoors in nature, it can prove to be very effective in releasing stress which ultimately will help you to build positive mental health.
4. Avoid sleep deprivation
Getting the required amount of sleep each night is very important for our physical and mental health. Research has shown that sleep deprivation can have negative effects on our emotional health. Moreover, maintaining a consistent sleep pattern can help to improve positive mental health.
You can also practice certain habits to get sleep better, such as avoiding exposure to screens at least an hour before sleeping and not consuming caffeinated drinks at night.
5. Eat a balanced and healthy diet
Nutrients in the food you eat are beneficial not only for your bodies but also for your brain health. Hence, your diet can actually improve your positive mental health. For example, consuming carbohydrates increases the level of the chemical, serotonin, in our bodies. Studies have shown that serotonin has a calming effect on a person’s mood. Foods rich in proteins increase norepinephrine, dopamine, and tyrosine in a person’s body and helps him stay mentally alert.
Moreover, fruits and vegetables contain many healthy nutrients that feed the cells of the entire body, including those that control the mood-regulating chemicals in our brains. It is also advisable to consume foods containing Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids such as fish, nuts, and flaxseed. A study at Harvard University has shown that
These nutrients can improve mental health by improving mood and maintaining the structural integrity of the brain cells, which is important for healthy cognitive function.
6. Take occasional breaks
Sometimes, all that is required to relieve stress and build positive mental health is to isolate from the situation causing stress. Whenever the situation gets out of hand and is too much to control, one should always step back. Approach the situation again when you feel better. An effective and simple method for relaxation is breathing exercise; simply close your eyes and breathe deeply at least 10 times.
7. Incorporate meditation into your daily lives
Research has shown that mindful meditation can help alleviate symptoms of anxiety and depression. Practicing meditation is pretty simple: just sit quietly in a comfortable spot, and focus on your breathing. Try to bring your mind’s attention to the present.
Meditation is very beneficial for the mind and body and can improve mental health. Moreover, being mindful of the present can also help in escaping from negative thoughts and feelings. Try to pay attention to small details in your surroundings, such as physical sensations, sounds, and smells.
8. Frequently express gratitude
Feeling and expressing gratitude can build positive mental health and a person’s overall wellbeing. Moreover, this emotional health activity has also been linked to happiness. One can express gratitude by speaking about it with someone, maintaining a gratitude journal or writing a daily gratitude list.
9. Avoid alcohol and drug abuse
We are already aware of the importance of positive mental health in our personal, social and professional life. Many people turn to alcohol and drugs in an attempt to escape from stress, depression, and anxiety. But in reality, these may only offer some temporary relieve and aggravate problems and stress in the long term.
10. Reach out to someone and seek medical help
There are different types of mental illnesses, so identifying the right one is important. Identifying a problem and seeking help for it is a sign of strength. If you feel you are experiencing symptoms of depression and anxiety, it is always beneficial to reach out and confide in a person you are close to and trust.
Sharing your concerns and problems with someone can increase your emotional state of mind and improve mental health. Moreover, when you know that someone cares for and values you, you are likely to think more positively. Furthermore, it is also advisable that one seeks medical help when needed. Therapy and medications can improve mental health and make you feel better.
Improving mental health can bring about positive effects on your mood, relationships and overall quality of life. Hence, it is important to start adopting habits into your everyday routine that have proven to be beneficial for positive mental health.
How can I heal my mental health?
Good mental health is more than just the absence of mental illness. We have discussed in detailed to get rid of mental illness. In last, value yourself, surrounded by good people, give yourself, set a realistic goal, and taking care of your body can help to heal mental health.