What Can I Do To Support My Mental Health?
A 3-Way Approach To Good Mental Health
The World Health Organization defines mental health as “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community” It is important to note that this definition does not say that one never feels sad, overwhelmed, or anxious, but rather is able to navigate these normal feelings and find ways to live life well.
A wise approach to maintaining good mental health includes three different avenues for wellness.
#1. Physical movement. Countless studies and plenty of anecdotal evidence has shown that being physically active has a positive impact on our mental and emotional well being. Whether you love walking, running, biking, yoga, or lifting weights, moving your body and elevating your heart rate releases feel good hormones like serotonin and dopamine which leads to a positive mood boost. This impact is multiplied when we do these activities outside, soaking up sunshine, fresh air, and any signs of nature around us.
#2. Keep mentally active. Engaging our brains in enjoyable and fruitful activities can go a long way in helping us feel mentally well. Meditation, deep breathing, and yoga are excellent examples of focusing the mind and reducing stress. Exploring new interests and activities challenges the mind to grow and adapt. Things like reading a great book, taking a class, learning a strategy game, or traveling somewhere new all keep our mind engaged and feel fulfilling. And of course, the benefits of all these activities increase exponentially when they connect us with other people.
#3. Take supportive supplements. There are a number of nutrients and herbs that support healthy brain function and promote feelings of calm, focus, and well being. L-theanine, GABA, St. John’s Wort, Ashwagandha and more are all great options for helping achieve optimal mental health.
Take your mental health seriously and remember to invest in yourself daily.