Our mood can affect every aspect of our day. How we feel mentally can impact our physical health, attitude and energy levels. While there is no magic potion available to achieve a healthy state of mind, there are several ways to improve our mental wellness. Read on to learn all about mental wellness and how to improve it.
What is mental wellness?
Most people are aware of mental illness but might not know much about the concept of mental wellness. Mental wellness is a term that refers to achieving a healthy balance between our psychological and emotional health.
The term doesn’t refer to achieving a state of perpetual happiness. Instead, mental wellness is a state of mind that focuses on stability and resilience, allowing us to cope with adversity and stress as well as enjoying all the blessings life has to offer.
Overall wellness involves several aspects of your overall health, including physical, emotional and spiritual. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association, obtaining wellness involves addressing these eight aspects:
By caring for all aspects, our mental wellness is improved too.
Tips to improve mental wellness
How can we best achieve this state of mental wellbeing? Here are five tips to help you improve mental wellness:
Nurture your relationships: The quality of our social circle has nothing to do with the number of friends or followers we might have on social media. Authentic relationships are those that involve genuine interactions, smiles, laughter, empathy and shared experiences. Like tending to a garden, these relationships must be nurtured and cultivated to flourish.
- Get daily exercise: Every aspect of well-being benefits from a daily exercise routine. This can include things like taking a brisk 20-30 minute walk, going on a short hike, taking a spin class, going on a bike ride, or whichever physical activity interests you the most. Mix it up so exercise doesn’t become a boring routine that you’ll eventually avoid.
- Volunteer your time: Anyone who has ever participated in a charity event or volunteer activities knows how good it feels to help others. Shifting our attention from ourselves towards offering support or kindness for others is very rewarding. Seek out some volunteer work in your community so you can make a real difference in someone’s life.
- Improve sleep quality: Without adequate quality sleep, it’s difficult to improve our mood, cognitive functioning and wellbeing. Make it a daily self-care priority to get seven to eight hours of sleep and stick to a regular sleep schedule so your body can anticipate when to slow down. Avoid caffeine after mid-afternoon. Avoid eating heavy meals after 7:00 pm. Put away electronic devices an hour before bedtime.
- Tackle stress: Stress is the number one threat to our mental wellbeing. Having chronically-elevated levels of cortisol (a hormone that causes stress) can lead to multiple serious medical and mental health conditions. To help control stress, add some relaxation techniques to your day. These include mindfulness, deep-breathing techniques, yoga, massage, or guided meditations.
Seeking improved mental wellness is like investing in yourself and your future. Say “yes” to taking care of your wellbeing — start practicing these tips today!
Ashley Addiction Treatment, formerly Father Martin’s Ashley, is a nationally recognized nonprofit leader in integrated, evidence-based treatment for substance use disorders. Our programs are accredited by The Joint Commission, and result in frequent publications of ongoing research into effective treatment methodologies. We offer holistic care that encompasses the mind, body and spirit through inpatient and outpatient treatment, provide drug detox, relapse prevention plans, family wellness programs and a variety of other services tailored to each patient’s unique needs. Our driving principle — “everything for recovery” — reinforces our mission to transform and save lives through the science of medicine, the art of therapy and the compassion of spirituality, and is complemented by our philosophy of healing with respect and dignity. For information about our comprehensive programs, please call 866-313-6307.