Tips for Taking Better Care of Your Mental Health

A study conducted in 2019 shows that one in five adults has experienced some form of mental health illness in their lifetime. The reality is that mental health issues exist. They’re not going away, so the best thing people can do is try to focus on taking care of themselves. This is where preventative care comes into play. The following are tips that can help with supporting optimal mental health.

mental health woman
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Seek Professional Help

One mistake many people make when it comes to taking care of their mental health is thinking they can do this on their own. Yes, you have a lot of power, and there’s a lot you can do, but you shouldn’t feel like you must do this only by yourself. An essential component in your plan to maintain your mental health is to work with a mental health professional. Start by finding professionals with a PhD in Clinical Psychology or comparable academic credentials, then narrow the list down based on location and price. After that, have an interview with them to find out if you’re compatible. The more comfortable you feel with these folks, the more you’ll get out of each session.

Focus on Stress

Stress is something most folks deal with. It’s commonplace that most people think it’s just something people have to accept and do nothing about. That’s not true. You must find a way to cope with stress and address it to regain your peace. Identify the triggers, and see if you can make any changes to the root of the issues. But sometimes things are not in our control. This is where you can focus on controlling what you can. Find ways to destress. Some people may do yoga or get a massage. Or do something simple like taking a walk or reading a book.

Positive Circle

You’ve heard of folks judging people based on their friends, but there’s a little truth to that. The reality is your friends can have a significant impact on your mental health. If your friends are negative and not too supportive, that will affect your mental health. This may not happen initially, but it may affect you over time. If this is the case, try seeking out positive friends who will uplift your spirits. Sure, you can keep those negative friends, but maybe be honest when they’re negative or distance yourself a bit. If someone wants to criticize your ideas, there’s a positive way to do this and a negative way. One way is constructive, the other isn’t.

Rethinking Goals and Achievements

People may set unrealistic goals. When you set too big a goal and don’t reach it, you feel bad. It starts to devalue you as a person. You begin to feel like you can’t succeed. That’s not a good way to set goals. It’s better to set realistic goals that you can reach. When you reach those goals, you’ll feel a lot better about yourself. It’ll help build confidence. It may even be a good idea to keep an achievement goal journal that you can look back on when you need to remember why you can succeed. No one is saying you can’t reach for the stars, but remember that there are many steps to take before getting to the top.

Gift of Giving

The idea of helping or giving back sounds nice. Most people will agree that it’s a good thing, but not everyone acts on this desire. The truth is that giving or helping others makes you feel good and also helps others at the same time. These acts of altruism can activate feel-good hormones that fight stress, and much more. It doesn’t have to be something that takes up a lot of time. It can be as simple as going through your closets and donating items to a thrift shop. Or bringing canned goods to a food pantry. Maybe it’s tutoring kids for free at the local library. Oftentimes, sending out positive energy by doing good deeds comes back to you in positive, unexpected ways.

These are some things you can do for your mental health. If you feel like you need help, please seek out professional help. Start by contacting your primary doctor or reaching out to local organizations that can provide support.

Tips contributed by Anne Davis.

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