Healthy life encompasses more than bodily well-being; it also encompasses emotional and mental well-being. The following are some strategies for individuals to promote their mental health and well-being.
- Sleep is required daily. Below is age wise sleep time recommended by CDC
- Experiment with new things frequently (eat a new food, try a different route to work, go to a new museum display).
- Conduct some mental exercises (read, do a puzzle occasionally during the week).
- Concentrate intently on a task and complete a part of it over the course of one to several hours, then take a break and do something soothing (walk, exercise, short nap).
- Plan to spend some time conversing with others on a variety of topics.
- Make an effort to schedule some free time each week to accomplish something that interests you (hobby, sport).
- Develop techniques for saying “no” when anything arises that you do not like to do or be a part of.
- Have some fun (go on a trip with someone you love, go shopping, go fishing; do not let vacation time slip away).
- Allow yourself to feel proud of your accomplishments, whether large and small (develop contentment).
- Have a social network; individuals who have strong social support networks have longer and better lives.
- Seek treatment and assistance as soon as possible if you are depressed, have suicidal thoughts, or are considering self- or other-harm.
- Individuals receiving medication for mental health issues should not discontinue taking these prescriptions, regardless of how “good” they feel, unless they have discussed their condition with their prescribing physician (s).
Roadmap to a Better Mind
Maintaining an Optimistic Attitude.
It is important to have a positive mindset; some strategies include the following:
- Maintaining a healthy balance of happy and negative emotions. Maintaining a good attitude does not imply that you will never experience unpleasant feelings such as grief or rage. You must experience them to navigate challenging circumstances. They can assist you in responding to a situation. However, you do not want those feelings to overwhelm you. For instance, it is counterproductive to dwell on negative events from the past or to worry excessively about the future.
- Attempting to retain happy feelings when they occur.
- Taking a breather from terrible news. Recognize when it is time to quit viewing or reading the news. Utilize social media to seek assistance and feel connected to others but use caution. Avoid falling for gossip, getting into disputes, or making unfavorable comparisons to others’ lives.
It entails being grateful for the positive things in one’s life. It’s beneficial to do this daily, either by thinking about your blessings or by writing them down in a diary. These might be significant events, such as the support of family and friends, or little ones, such as having a wonderful dinner. It’s important to take the time to appreciate that you had a pleasant experience. Gratitude practice may assist you in gaining a new perspective on your life. When you are anxious, for example, you may be unaware that there are other times when you experience good feelings. Gratitude can assist you in identifying them.
Take Care of Physical Health
Since physical and mental health is inextricably linked. We have discussed ways to improve physical activity in our previous article (link)
Getting enough sleep.
Sleep influences your mood. Without enough sleep, you may become more irritable and irritated. Over time, a lack of adequate sleep might increase your risk of developing depression. As a result, it’s critical to maintain a consistent sleep pattern and to receive enough quality sleep each night.
Consumption of nutritious foods.
Not only can proper nutrition help you feel better physically, but it may also help you feel better mentally and alleviate worry and tension. Additionally, deficiency of certain minerals may lead to the development of some mental diseases. For instance, there may be a connection between low vitamin B12 levels and depression. Consuming a well-balanced diet might assist you in obtaining the nutrients you want.
Humans are social beings, and having strong, healthy connections with others is critical. Having enough social support may help shield you from the negative effects of stress. Additionally, it is beneficial to have a variety of relationships. Apart from reconnecting with family and friends, you may consider volunteering in your town or neighborhood. For instance, you may volunteer for a local organization or join a club devoted to a certain pastime.
Develop a Feeling of Purpose and Meaning
This may be accomplished via employment, volunteer work, the acquisition of new skills, or the exploration of one’s faith.
Developing coping mechanisms, or techniques for dealing with difficult conditions. They may assist you in confronting an issue, taking action, being adaptable, and not easily giving up on resolving it.
Meditation is a mind-body activity that teaches you how to concentrate your attention and awareness. There are several forms of meditation, including mindfulness and transcendental meditation. Generally, meditation entails:
- A place that is as devoid of distractions as possible
- A unique and pleasant stance. This might be when sitting, laying down, or walking.
- A focal point of attention, such as a well selected word or phrase, an object, or your breathing
- An open attitude in which you attempt to allow distractions to come and go without criticizing them
These are exercises that you do to trigger your body’s natural relaxation reaction and cause your breathing to slow down, your blood pressure to drop, and your muscular tension and stress levels to decrease. There are several types of relaxation methods.
Progressive relaxation, in which you contract and release various muscle groups, sometimes while engaging in mental imagery or breathing activities
Guided imagery is a technique in which you learn to concentrate your attention on pleasant pictures in order to feel calmer and more focused.
Biofeedback is a technique that involves the use of electrical instruments to teach you how to manage certain physiological processes such as breathing, heart rate, and muscular tension.
Self-hypnosis, in which the objective is to induce a calm, trance-like state in response to a particular suggestion or visual cue.
Deep breathing exercises include concentrating on slow, deep, even breaths.