Your mental health may affect your overall health more than you may know. Whenever you feel stressed or sad or experience an intense emotion, your body suffers too. How you interact with another person may be affected as well. Although everyone experiences different kinds of mental illnesses, these therapist-approved tips can give you a good head start.
Taking good care of both your physical body and your mental health is necessary. Keep in mind that there are many other ways you can improve your mental health. However, it is always advisable to seek clinical help.
Ways To Improve Your Mental Health And Increase Happiness
Exercise is not just about gaining muscle size or working out to get a particular body shape. It has a lot of advantages, such as improving your physical health and physique. But some people do not know exercising can also have a profoundly positive effect on your mental health and well-being.
Harvard’s School of Public Health has recently conducted a study that proved a 15-minute run or an hour-long walk a day reduces the risk of depression by 26%. The same research also showed that having a regular exercise schedule prevents a person from relapsing.
- Write down your thoughts.
Finding a healthy way to express yourself is one way to deal with overwhelming negative emotion. Letting your feelings out is suitable for a reason: it helps you release your frustrations. According to David Klow, a licensed marriage and family therapist, it is helpful to keep a mental health journal.
Writing down your feeling, emotions, and ideas can help you keep track of the changes with your moods or behavior. Your journal should not necessarily be lengthy. You can set aside a few minutes every day. Remember: your journal is your haven, so it doesn’t need to follow a structure. It’s your secret place to discuss anything you want. Let the words flow.
- Hang out with your loved ones.
According to Dr. Danielle Forshee of the Society of Clinical Psychology, hugs from our family and friends, especially during stressful times, trigger our brain to release hormones called oxytocin. These attachment hormones make us feel loved, which decreases the feeling of sadness, loneliness, and stress.
By spending time with people close to you, you give yourself a strong sense of not being alone. It is easier said than done. But whenever you feel stressed, lonely, or just tired, reach out to someone without any hesitation.
- Learn to say no.
Saying “yes” every time to everyone means you are a people-pleaser. If you feel pressured to agree to do things that you don’t want, then maybe it’s time for you to learn to say “no.” Agreeing to people is not a bad thing, but feeling pressure can cause a person a lot of stress and anxiety. Like what Alicia H. Clark, Psy.D. used to say, “The sensation of pressure doesn’t have to be negative—it can be a positive challenge and motivating.”
At the same time, saying “no” is also teaching yourself how or when to set boundaries. Whenever you say “yes” to another person, you are saying “no” to your wants and needs.
- Get proper medication if you need it.
Once you consult a medical professional, your doctor might need to put you under medication. If this happens, never be ashamed of your situation because taking the proper medication will help you improve your mental state.
According to Deborah Serani, PsyD, “The reason more don’t go for psychotherapy or medication is stigma. They worry they’ll be labeled, deemed undesirable, and other such things.” Be sure that your chosen professional is licensed to provide mental health services. Never hold back from asking lots of questions during the consultation. Keep in mind that finding the best match is critical to getting the most out of your treatment.
Signs Of Good Mental Health
The following are indications that your mind is in a good place.
- Self-love. It is a sense of looking after yourself and your mental health. Self-love is the capacity to strengthen the belief in yourself, take control of your well-being, and achieve resiliency.
- Tolerance. It is the capacity or ability to embrace conflicts that surround you and involve other people. At the same time, it is the ability to deal with stress and bounce back from it.
- Peace and harmony. These come from the genuineness you feel towards yourself and with others. It is also the ability to build and maintain fulfilling relationships.
- Liveliness. A thirst for loving life and the ability to laugh, be carefree and have fun. It’s the feeling of being more alive and more engaged in everything you do.
- Balance. The capability of having a sense of balance when it comes to getting work done and giving yourself time to relax and play.
A licensed clinical psychologist John Mayer, Ph.D. once said, “Negative thoughts are just a part of life, but they don’t have to consume you. Instead of trying to ignore those thoughts altogether, try countering them with positive statements.” If you want to build better mental health, try these therapist-approved tips now!