Boosting your mental health is not always about visiting a mental health professional. While there are some mental health issues that necessitate professional medical treatment, there are other mental issues that you can deal with on your own.
Remember, certain personality quirks and unhealthy thinking patterns affect our mental well-being and hence, impede our ability to function terrifically. Thankfully, you can initiate a number of well-planned steps to improve your mental health and ensure holistic success in all spheres of life.
Here are 4 unfailing strategies to improve your mental well-being.
- Embrace the Outdoors
When you stay closed indoors, your thought process tends to get stifled. Resultantly, your brain is unable to function at peak level, which dents your performance and ability to take well-informed decisions. While urbanization has its own sets of benefits, it can also wreak havoc on your brain and mood.
In fact, a study published in 2015 found that spending merely 90 minutes communing with nature reduces brain activity in the subgenual prefrontal cortex, a prominent region in the brain. This is the region that gets stimulated when people mull over negative thoughts. Researchers have also found that this brain activity does not get stymied if a person walks along a busy road.
Therefore, rather than spending your time indoors, you may want to head outdoors and spend some time with yourself amidst lush greenery. It will boost your self-esteem, eliminate negative thoughts and also help you unwind.
- Meditate to Deal with Stress
Stress is part and parcel of modern lifestyle. However, the key to terrific mental health is having the ability to cope with stress and take it in your stride so that it doesn’t derail your life. When you meditate, you learn to become more flexible in your thinking. It helps you transition your thoughts from negative thinking to more positive ones.
A lot of research has been done on meditation and its effects on the brain. According to researchers, meditation can alter the brain activity in the regions that transport impulses related to pain. This means that you can calm yourself down with meditation and do away with irrelevant thoughts have can lead to anxiety and depression.
- Become Physically Active
Forget about mental exercises. You are anyway doing those exercises every single day while working, thinking, or solving a crossword puzzle in the newspaper. However, your brain will stand to benefit more if you get physically active. A study published in 2012 noted that physical activity is a much better means of staving off brain aging as opposed to mental activity.
Researchers found that people who opted for walking and other physical exercises a few times a week experienced reduced brain shrinkage and benefited from stronger neural connections as compared to those individuals who led a sedentary life. Of course, let’s not forget that exercising stimulates production of endorphins, which elevate mood and combat the onset of depression. It will also help you sleep better at nights so that you wake up feeling refreshed, rested and energized.
- Don’t get Worked Up Over Small Things
Daily irritations are part of life, but when you choose to dwell upon them, they can become mentally exhausting and debilitating. If you let these everyday annoyances get to you, don’t be surprised if you are constantly anxious and distressed. That is why you need to tackle every day problem without getting worked up.
According to a research by a UC Irvine psychologist in 2013, minor everyday problems can have a profound effect on a person’s mental health. The researchers claim that people are so involved in achieving their long-term goals that they miss out on the importance of controlling their emotions.
If you want to enjoy supreme mental health, it is important that you change your responses to minor stressful situations, such as a disagreement with your spouse or standing in a queue to get your morning coffee at Starbucks. In fact, it is as fantastic as sticking to a regular exercise routine and eating a healthy diet.
Your mental health is your responsibility. If you want to boost your mental health, you would do well to incorporate these four tips and you will immediately notice a difference in your mental health. When you treat your mind and body with the seriousness that they truly deserve, there is no reason for you to experience adverse effects.