Mental health is an extremely important aspect of your overall well-being, yet it often falls by the wayside when it comes to taking care of ourselves. Improving your mental health can mean seeking out professional help, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t steps you can take to improve your psychological well-being, leaving you happier and adding to your overall enjoyment of life. Use these tips to get started on your path to better mental care.
Write down what you are grateful for
Expressing your gratitude for the things you have has been shown to increase happiness. Try starting a gratitude journal or write a daily gratitude list, and be sure to keep up with it, because a regular practice is where you’ll see the greatest benefit.
Tell yourself something positive
Our perception of ourselves is a powerful tool for affecting how we feel. If we constantly perceive ourselves in a negative way, it often results in a self-fulfilling prophecy, where we end up viewing situations in life that confirm our negative notions. Practice using words that are honest but constructive that promote self-worth.
When working out, your body releases powerful mood-boosting chemicals called endorphins that are wonderful for helping you maintain a positive outlook on life. Working out and staying active can be powerful in holding back anxiety, depression, and stress. This could be anything from going on a short walk every day to lifting weights at the gym.
Our diet is responsible for a lot, including the health of our minds. Be sure to maintain a balanced diet, with responsible amounts of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. Try to include foods that are rich in omega-3 fatty acids (fish, nuts, and flaxseed), as research shows that they are great for improving mood and restoring the structural integrity of your brain cells.
Get some sleep
Sleep is one of the most powerful things for the human body. During sleep, your immune system repairs itself, while your brain gets a much-needed break. Those that do not get sufficient sleep can suffer from the diminished immune system, negative moods, and be prone to greater stress. Try shutting off about an hour before bed, avoid caffeinated beverages, and stick to a sleep schedule.
Surround yourself with good people
Having strong family and social connections are important, as they provide you with a support network you can lean on in times of need. Try making plans with family members, or seeking out new opportunities to meet people through organizations, classes or clubs.
Don’t be afraid to seek out help
There has long been a stigma against mental health, but in the end, there is nothing wrong with seeking out professional help. There is no threshold you have to reach to make it “okay” to seek out therapy. If you’re experiencing mood changes or issues that will not go away, talk to someone and get help. Try using the Psychology Today therapist finder if you need help finding a professional to work with.