8 Ways To Take Care Of Your Mental Health

Oct 21, 2016
Tagged with: 8 Ways To Take Care Of Your Mental Health

 

Depression has become a serious health condition in the United States.  It is sad to see and hear about people on a killing rampage in the news, and America has been getting a lot of the spotlight.  While the media and the larger portion of the public see guns, others see the problem could be deeper.  It could be mental health, and according to the Center for Disease Prevention and Control, more than 1 in 20 Americans who are 12 years old and older reported depression.  That was just back in 2005 and 2006.

What exactly is mental health? The World Health Organization defines it as “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community”.  Essentially, therefore, mental health encompasses everything that makes as human and human to ourselves and towards others.  Unfortunately, there are factors that may affect it significantly, including interpersonal relationships and even weight loss mistakes which can be avoided.

Can you train your brain?

Of course!  It controls how everything in your body works, doesn’t it?  The mind is so powerful that when you harness it enough, it can do even the things you don’t intend it to.  Many studies have provided evidence that physical activity and your mental health are connected.  In a study published in 2004 in the Journal of Psychiatry and Mental Health Nursing, the researchers concluded that exercise improves a person’s self-esteem and cognitive abilities, including recall.  Exercise was also shown to improve moods and vulnerability to anxiety and depression.

Here are 8 ways you can improve your mental health:

1. Stop substance abuse.If you are taking illegal drugs, or even occasionally taking maintenance meds without prescription, stop it immediately.  An MRI scan of the brain of a person who takes illegal drugs shows how continued use shrinks the brain, slowly eating it up until it can no longer function normally.  Alcohol and cigarettes likewise affect your brain health too.  Seek help if you need more guidance and support in your withdrawal.

2. Sleep.  The link between depression and sleep disturbances is well established.  In fact, insomnia is one of the key factors which experts look for in diagnosing clinical depression.  Sleep is characterized by a period where the body is in a perfect state of balance or equilibrium.  In this state, your body requires a constant amount and level of energy.  The surplus is used by your body to repair and rejuvenate itself.  Lack or shortage of sleep affects your mood, focus and attention.  It also affects how competently or not you can deal with stressful situations.

3. Eat healthy.Eating the right kinds of foods at the right amounts nourishes your body as well as your mind.  There are foods, such as chocolates and colorful fruits and veggies, that help enhance a person’s moods.  Never commit the following weight loss mistakes: depriving yourself of food, allowing yourself to go hungry or skipping meals.  Every food in that food pyramid is important, that includes your sugars, salts and fats.  The simple rules to remember are: to eat more fresh, eat less processed, eat a diverse variety, and eat in the proper proportion.

4. Exercise regularly.Exercise trains your body — that is just what you see.  It also trains your mind to become more resilient.  When you are exercising, you are also psyching up your mind that you can complete the fitness goals that you’ve set, and so you go on even when you’re panting heavily.

5. Allow yourself to be surrounded by good, well-rounded people.  Influence plays a big role in achieving an ideal mental health status.  Allow the optimism of happy people rub on to you.  You can do it too.

6. Do things that make you feel good about yourself. Whether it is a hobby or a sport or surprising a friend, even volunteering time at a local non-profit, doing things that make you feel proud of yourself and what you’re capable of doing and sharing improve your mental health too.

7. Spend some quiet time. Your mind need short breaks from your routine and the loudness of the world too.  Pray and meditate or simply spend some time outdoors, alone, to commune with nature.  Plan for work leaves and take it.

8. Give yourself plenty of mental exercises. Play mind games on your gadgets or the old fashioned crosswords or puzzles.  Read good books.  Take to the road and go some place you’ve never been before.  Find your way around.

Conclusion

Your overall health and well-being includes your mental health too.  Make sure to practice these 8 tips.

 

Author: Jazz Pollard