Your Mental wellbeing is important, it affects everything from how we handle work, family, and other stressors in our lives. We can help make sure that we are promoting positive mental health by checking in with ourselves and making sure that we are consistently implementing healthy behaviours, practices, and strategies.
So, what is mental wellbeing?
To clarify, mental wellbeing is not the same as mental illness. Whilst elongated periods of poor mental health may lead to the possible development of some mood disorders, mental wellbeing is less about illness and more about your state of wellness. A state of mental wellbeing can be defined as an individual’s awareness of their unique abilities, how they cope with the stressors of life and how productively and fruitfully they can work and contribute to their community.
What does a balanced state of wellbeing look like?
Firstly, it should be acknowledged that every person’s state of wellbeing is subjective to them and their unique set of circumstances. However, some good indicators of someone having a stable state of mental health may be that,
They have a healthy level of self-confidence,
They can build and maintain healthy relationships,
They feel they have a sense of purpose,
They can live and work productively,
They can cope with normal stressors of life,
And they can manage when changes in their lives occur.
Mental health does not mean that you will never experience negative thoughts or feel stressed or overwhelmed, it is not about what you experience or don’t experience it is how you cope and move forward from these experiences.
So how do you promote your mental health?
As acknowledged earlier mental health is subjective to the individual, so the specific behaviours and routines that may contribute to one individual’s positive wellbeing will be unique to them, however, we can all utilize a general framework in which we can implement these specific behaviours and habits that will be beneficial to our mental health.
Simple Ways of Promoting Your Mental Well Being
1. Human connection
In today’s busy world it can be hard to find time to connect with other people, but research is showing that neglecting your social interactions can have negative impacts on your health. Interacting with others can help boost your mood and give you a positive sense of stability, belonging and support. If you are time-poor or feeling low on energy, start simple, where you can, try and initiate a conversation with a family member or a friend, initiate regular catchups, or join a group class or hobby.
2. Physical Health
Physical health and mental health are intertwined, to feel holistically well it’s important to keep on top of healthy exercise, sleep, and diet patterns. If even one of these areas is not fulfilled to your needs, you may find that your mental health suffers. Regular physical activities such as short brisk walks are wonderful for releasing feel-good chemicals and expending any pent-up negative energy. Nutrition is also important, eating a balanced diet full of complex nutrients, is important for our brain function and energy levels. Making sure our sleep patterns are regulated and uninterrupted is extremely important for maintaining mental wellbeing as well. If you’re finding that you are getting a full night’s rest and waking up tired, that is something that needs to be addressed because all of these factors are important for maintaining positive mental wellbeing.
3. Learn new skills.
Research shows that learning new skills not only keeps your brain active but can help boost your self-esteem and give you a sense of purpose, this may also be able to tie into human connection if you decide to learn a new skill within a group!
When life becomes cluttered and busy it can be difficult to take a moment for yourself. Practicing mindfulness techniques such as mindful breathing, taking a moment, being aware of your surroundings, and attempting to keep your thoughts in the present moment, can be a very effective tool in relieving the anxiety and stress that we can encounter in our everyday lives.
Whether it is picking up a new hobby, taking a moment to yourself, or having a simple conversation, implementing small changes like these can all add quality to your life and aid in the promotion of your mental wellbeing, and mental well-being matters!