Nowadays, we talk so much about physical health. Diet fads such as the keto diet, or intermittent fasting are the subject of discussion at almost every single dinner party and how to lose weight fast, or best workout plans for bikini season are searched frequently on Google.
While I think that looking your best directly correlates to feeling your best and having confidence in yourself, I also believe that we need to focus more on mental health in general. A lot of the time, I think that fitness goals and physical looks are so important to everyone that they get to into it and start comparing themselves with others around them, which is not good for mental health.
For example, just the other day, I witnessed two ladies working out. Both of them were in their 40’s and one had worked out (pretty intensely) her entire life, while the other one never worked out and never played sports. Obviously, the lady who had worked out in the past was able to do more than the one who had never worked out, but the one that never worked out kept comparing herself to everyone around her. In the end, it led to her running off in tears because she could not compete. Yes, physical health is so very important, but this comparison game that we play, such as the example above, is detrimental to mental health.
It goes above and beyond physical comparisons, as well. We live in a world where more is better and it is very easy to compare yourself to others. If you think that you are in a spot in life where you are starting to compare yourself to others and are possibly struggling with your mental health, I highly encourage you to keep reading this post on how to improve your mental health. Below, you will find just a few easy ways that you can improve your mental health and get out of this constant comparison game that is so very easy to get involved in nowadays.
Keep A Journal
I love the simple task of keeping a journal by your bedside, or even in your car. Bullet journaling is ‘in’ right now, but I think that even if you simply write down your thoughts, feeling, and positive (and maybe negative) things about the day, it can be a great way to review it, re-evaluate, and improve in the future. Plus, I absolutely love going back and re-reading old journals – it is the best trip down memory lane!
Quiet Your Mind
According to Huffington Post, “Meditation is mindfulness without agitation,” Narasimhan says. Stress creates agitation and is something most of us deal with on some level. And it’s increasing, given the rising use of anti-anxiety medications, notes Stanford University researcher Emma Seppälä. Meditation allows people to take charge of their own nervous system and emotions. “Studies have shown improved ability to [permanently] regulate emotions in the brain,” adds Seppälä, who is also the associate director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education at Stanford. “It’s very empowering.”” They say that meditation can help improve your concentration, promote a healthy lifestyle, increase self-awareness, increase happiness, increase acceptance, slow aging, and last but not least, it can help improve cardiovascular and immune health, as well.
Remove Toxic People & Things
Everyone has those people or things in their life that they should probably do without. You know what I’m talking about. In order to fully improve your mental health, you need to rid yourself of these toxic people or things. It will not only improve your mental health, but it will make you overall healthier and happier.
Set Realistic Goals
Setting realistic goals is a great way to get back on track with your mental health. If you have fallen off the wagon, it’s okay – you can easily get back on, I promise! First, you need to evaluate and figure out what you need to set your goals for. If you are wanting to lose weight, make sure you are choosing a healthy number and have a workout and eating plan that is healthy for you, specifically. If you are wanting to set realistic goals in your work environment, I think that is great because it will give you a sense of accomplishment when you hit those goals and it will also create healthy boundaries when it comes to getting your work done. Whatever it is that you need to set realistic goals for, just make sure to evaluate it first and think about it!
Sometimes in order to improve your mental health, getting help is the best way to do it. This allows you to receive insight from an outsider that is not completely invested in the personal situation. If you are looking for a counselor, I highly recommend Ray of Hope Counseling Services. With seven convenient locations in Georgia, Ray of Hope Counseling Services provides individual and group therapy, family therapy, as well as couples counseling. In addition to the license and education that each therapist holds, each therapist at Ray of Hope Counseling Services also has additional training and/or holds certifications in their specialty area, which is very important when it comes to helping their clients with life changes and challenges. Clinical Director and Founder, Lynn Thompson Umstead, is a trained mental health professional with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and a Masters of Science degree in Clinical Psychology. In addition, Lynn also holds many certifications and/or licenses such as a National Certified Counselor, Imago Relationship Therapist, and Anger Management Specialist, and she is registered by the state of Georgia as a civil and divorce mediator. While Lynn does treat clients in a private practice setting, she also supervises interns and therapists working towards their full licensure.
This week is actually National Suicide Awareness Week, so I thought this post was fitting. Did you know that suicide is often the result of an untreated mental health condition? This is why it is so important to make sure you are constantly improving your mental health and also so important to get help when you need it!