Monday, September 20, 2010

Mental Health Monday 9/20

Mental Health Monday
In an attempt to increase overall positivity and productivity in your home I present to you, "Mental Health Monday" - a time where I hope to encourage each of you to take some time for yourself, examine areas where negativity is creeping in and point you in the direction of powerful solutions!

For our first Mental Health Monday, let's just take a look at what mental health is.

According to the American Academy of Physicians, Mental health is our overall psychological well being - how we view ourselves, others, how our relationships with others are functioning, how well we are able to handle our emotions and feelings, especially during difficult situations. Many people feel if they do not have a clinical disorder then they are just fine. While this may be true, so many of us suffer from self doubt, are overly critical of ourself or others and have an overall negative outlook on life - these are things that can contribute to poor mental health.

Here are some characteristics of a person with good mental health:
  • A sense of contentment.
  • A zest for living and the ability to laugh and have fun.
  • The ability to deal with stress and bounce back from adversity.
  • A sense of meaning and purpose, in both their activities and their relationships.
  • The flexibility to learn new things and adapt to change.
  • A balance between work and play, rest and activity, etc.
  • The ability to build and maintain fulfilling relationships.
  • Self-confidence and high self-esteem.
Since we are all human and all subject to bad days, we are not always going to feel this way or present these characteristics. That is completely normal - I have a bad day weekly - ha! What I want you to ask yourself is, "Do I usually feel positive or am I struggling with some of these things mentioned above on a regular basis"? If you do feel you are struggling, please do not be down on yourself because of it. Instead, be proud of yourself for identifying some areas of your life that you would like to change and being open to taking that first step to, well, just feeling better.

Here are a few things that can help to put you on the path for better days:
  • Pray, spend time in meditation. Research continues to prove that those with a growing, loving relationship with God have better mental health than those who claimed no relationship.
  • Exercise. Get those negative, anxious vibes out of your body! Spend some time moving, even if it is just walking and you will feel so much better than you did when you started. Exercise releases some of the same hormones found in anti-depressants
  • Surround yourself with positive and encouraging people. You know that saying, "When in Rome..."
  • Get some Sun - as we'll talk about next week, being in a dark and dreary place can really put a damper on your mood
  • Get good sleep. If you are sleep deprived, everything in life is going to seem less appealing. Take care of yourself before you can take care of others
  • If you've tried these things and you still feel 'off', please talk to someone. As I have told many people, if you had a sinus infection you would not hesitate to go to the doctor- this is no different.
Take notice of the blessings in your life, celebrate each day as the gift from above that it is and stop comparing yourself to others. You are wonderfully and beautifully made - uniquely you!


Courtney said...

Ahh the sun issue. In Alaska the suicide rates go up a lot during the winter (which by the way is 9 months long.) You barely get any sunshine, and if you do it's most likely a overcast day. I had no issues with it, because I love Fall/Winter.

Lauren McKnight said...

I love this idea! Yeah for you!

Vonda Axe said...

Great post!! Love the MHM idea!!

Barb @ 1SentenceDiary said...

I spent several days last week in a funk. No fun. I agree with many of your suggestions. To help myself, I set up a specific plan to improve my moodiness, and it seems to have helped. :-)