Ancient sages such as Buddha, King Solomon and numerous other people of note have all suggested that mental wellbeing should be a top priority in everyone’s life. For example, in Proverbs 23:7, King Solomon said, “For as [a man] thinks in his heart, so is he.”
Knowing that we can literally become our thoughts shows us just how powerful the human mind is. So here are four simple mental-health-oriented steps you can take to help improve your overall quality of life.
1) Let it out. Life is stressful. Unfortunately, society has a way of shaming people for complaining about their problems. Doing so is often viewed as a sign of weakness, which, according to experts at the Mental Health Foundation, is not true. Their advice? “Talking about your feelings can help you stay in good mental health and deal with times when you feel troubled.” So don’t keep your feelings bottled up.
2) Work out. Associates of the US National Library of Medicine National Institutes of Health have stated that even mild aerobic exercise such as swimming, gardening and dancing have “proved to reduce anxiety and depression” and improve self-esteem. Feeling blue? Plant some greens. Do a little shimmy while listening to your favorite tunes. Take a dip in a pool or do all three.
3) Rest up. Lack of proper sleep can make even a normally cheerful person grumpy. So just imagine how it will affect someone who is already feeling less than fabulous. How’s this for an example? “Studies using different methods and populations estimate that 65% to 90% of adult patients with major depression, and about 90% of children with this disorder, experience some kind of sleep problem.” What can you do to help avoid this situation? Create a sleep schedule and stick to it.
4) Get a hobby. “Hobbies make you interesting,” says Jaime L. Kurtz Ph.D. “They add layers to your identity, richness to your self-concept.” By spending a few hours doing something you enjoy after work, school, etc., you will be better able to deal with stress whenever it rears its ugly head – and it will because that’s life. So take up that hobby you’ve been thinking about but haven’t yet.
These suggestions should not be used as substitutes for professional medical help. Please consult your primary health care provider immediately if you are having trouble coping with difficult situations or even routine situations.
Bible Gateway passage: Proverbs 23:7 – King James Version. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Proverbs+23%3A7&version=KJV
How to look after your mental health. (2018, February 8). Retrieved from https://www.mentalhealth.org.uk/publications/how-to-mental-health
Exercise for Mental Health. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470658/#i1523-5998-8-2-106-b2
Harvard Health Publishing. (2018, June 20). Sleep and mental health – Harvard Health. Retrieved from https://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/sleep-and-mental-health