5 ways to take care of your mental health every dayNowadays, we come across all kinds of advice on how to live to stay healthy everywhere. The large part of this advice, however, refer to the physical fitness of the body which may lead to a conclusion that once we get rid of those extra pounds, we’ll get rid of all our problems and will overcome all obstacles that could come our way.
Does staying healthy means solely the health of the body? WHO defines health as a state of full physical, but also psychological and social well-being. The Organization published statistics that say that unfortunately over 450 million people all over the world suffer from a mental illness.
Which preventive measures against mental disorders can you take? Genetic, psychological and social factors make mental illnesses develop. And although we are not able to influence our genes, we can try to modify our mindset and lifestyle in such a way that we can prevent mental disorders from developing further. What can everyone of us do to take care of not only physical, but also psychological well-being?
Sport does not only help us lose those extra pounds. Physical activity positively influences our mood as well. It’s a great method to get rid of stress by relieving muscle and emotional tension. While exercising we let our mind take some rest from recurring negative thoughts which has a soothing effect.
Another advantage of physical training is the increase in the production of endorphins, chemical substances responsible for reducing physical pain and releasing the feeling of happiness (they call them “happiness hormones” for a reason). Physical activity can also improve our self-esteem.
Adults should be physically active at least 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week and it does not need to be jogging, gym, or swimming. The variety of sport disciplines allows us to choose an activity that gives us pleasure and that we don;t associate with an unpleasant obligation. Engaging is various activities opens up a possibility to meet new people and a feeling of belonging to a certain community.
Take care of your social life
In the era of digitalization it’s easy to forget that as human beings we need to have contact with others in real world. Spending time with our close ones can improve our mood and help us detach from the everyday, sometimes overwhelming life. Surrounding yourself with friends and family creates a certain support network, which can significantly help us in the weaker periods of your life. It’s important to not be afraid of asking close ones for help when we need it. When we tackle a problem that we are not able to solve ourselves, talking to another person ad looking at a situation from a different perspective can be very helpful. Sometimes an ordinary chat with another person can be very uplifting. Remember that spending time with negative people can worsen your mood. If you notice that a friend of yours has such influence on you and you care for your good mood, you should take even a temporary change of environment or making new friends into account. Such that would bring good, positive emotions into your life.
It is widely known that the right diet has a positive influence on the organism. It helps maintain a youthful appearance and the accurate body mass, prevents from lifestyles diseases such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or diabetes and vitamins in fruit and vegetables strengthen the immune system. Does it also affect our mental health?
The way we eat does leave an impact on our mental health. The modern fast diet unfortunately does not provide the vitamins minerals and Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids, which predisposes one of the most common mental illness — depression, to form. This is because those are substances that are essential to our brain: B vitamins help the brain regulate the production of neurotransmitters, and Omega-3 acids reduce inflammation in the system. A healthy diet is a varied diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish and nuts. Research shows that people who eat this way have a 35% smaller risk of developing depression than those who do not eat such products on a regular basis. In addition, many studies indicate a link between depression and obesity, so it is worth taking care of your body, providing it with the necessary energy and substances vital to function well.
Take some rest
Sleep plays a very important role in our lives. It lets the body to regenerate, keep both physical and mental balance and has a soothing effect on the Central nervous system. Lack of sleep, in turn, negatively affects all cognitive functions, including thinking, makes us distracted, causes mood and focus anomalies, which impairs our daily functioning. Consequently, our immunity to stress is reduced, and this can lead to the development of mental disorders, such as neurosis. The need for sleep depends on age, it is said that adults should sleep a minimum of 7 hours per night. It is also important to maintain sleep hygiene, which improves the quality of night rest.
Don’t be afraid to go to a therapist
Despite the prevailing taboo that therapy is something shameful, meetings with a therapist are meant for each of us, not just for the mentally ill. You can enter a therapy when you are experiencing a worse time of your life, for example, after the loss of a loved one, but also because of excessive stress or simply if you have the desire to develop and work on yourself. Working with a therapist can help us learn something new about us and give us tools that we can use to solve problems that we are not so good at dealing with at the moment. Therefore, in order to take care of your mental health it is worth meeting with a therapist from time to time. That’s where technology helps the busy ones, which enables online appointments with a therapist.
In order to prevent mental disorders, it is worthwhile to introduce healthy changes to your lifestyle step by step. The above methods of maintaining mental health are some of the basic, but not the only methods that people use when taking care of ones mind. It is important to find something that will actually improve our mood every day and positively affect us.