Even in this day and age, some people don’t realize that your mental health has a massive impact on how you are in general. It not only affects your mental state, but it also affects your physical state. Think of your mental health as just as important as your physical health, and that one can impact the other.
A man who has broken his back and is in regular pain can become depressed because he can’t do the tasks he was once able to. The depressive cycle can cause that same man to think of himself as less than, or unworthy because of his perceived notion of ability. Of course, he is no better or less than he was before, but his mental health state impacts the way he views himself.
Poor Mental Health can affect your physical condition.
Similarly, depression and anxiety can cause all kinds of physical pain in the long term. It is also documented that these can lead to loss of libido, night sweats, restlessness, cramping, and a whole arena of long term physical complaints.
We aren’t readily made aware of good mental health practices because there just isn’t enough support available; funding is hard to come by and because of this there isn’t as much longevity in the support systems as there should be. Services close as quickly as they surface; free access to services for people at the grassroots of society is on the decline. There’s also very little awareness. I sent out a questionnaire once asking local to me people about good mental health and many of the answers were slightly misguided!
Social media and technology play a big part in the declining of society’s good mental health. Humans are designed to run wild and free in the wind, but we sit in the comfort of our houses with our screens and our electronics. We no longer know how to communicate with each other; share ideas, build friendships, create deep and meaningful bonds with other people. Whilst a lot of good has come out of the age of information, a lot of bad has too, and unless you know how to keep yourself in check it can often have bad consequences.
Tech free days help the mind
Have you ever tried a technology-free day? Test it out — see how amazing you feel. There have been clinical studies that have shown screens can increase anxiety and depression. If you’re asking why this is, then you should get rid of all tech for a day and see how you feel afterward. Then you’ll know!
I expect that in roughly ten years if we don’t do something about it then we will be in a crisis of mental health. We can do something about it though, and that is by maintaining good mental health.
Why? So that you can live a happy and fulfilling life. But often there is very little awareness on how to do this, and sometimes the barriers to achieving this for some people are too great. A man who has a nice house, a good wage, and a loving family can still be unhappy — it all depends on how he views himself rather than how others view him.
When I was healing from my trauma, I had this perception of myself that I was a horrible human being, and that I wasn’t worth loving — yet the people that knew me thought that I was kind and loving and really enjoyed being in my presence. That didn’t matter though, the only thing that mattered to me was how I would feel inside, and no matter how hard I tried to self-medicate from being in the presence of others; I still felt like a bottomless hole of despair.
Leading a happy and fulfilling life is subjective
Leading a happy and fulfilling life is also subjective. Whilst one person may want a huge house and tons of cars, another may just be happy with a little family in a bungalow. But certainly, make sure that living a fulfilling life is what you expect from yourself and not anyone else’s expectations from you. Other people’s expectations are often limited to their own vision, and not understanding the full you. You should only be asking for you, within the confines of your own mind.
But to live a happy life you at first must make peace from the journey you’ve traveled. I’ve met a lot of people who aren’t comfortable with the mistakes they’ve made and the people they’ve wronged, and whilst fully moved on in adulthood it can still play on their mind, causing problems in the long run.
I tend to look at unresolved issues as needing to be resolved quickly else they will play on my mind and distract me from what I’m currently doing. I’m not putting my 100% into life if I’m thinking about the argument with my wife I had last night that caused her to stop speaking to me for the whole evening. I try not to go to bed on an unresolved issue — that way tasks that need my attention do get my full attention.
Don’t go to bed on an argument
You don’t want a cluttered mind, do you? Unclutter it and free yourself to go on adventures.
Anyone can fall into bad mental health, so if you’re reading this and you have mental health issues, know that you’re not alone. They say at least 1 in 4 people will suffer from a mental health-related issue during their life span. I have known no-one that hasn’t suffered bad mental health at one point or another. And just like when you have a physical malady, you go to a professional to get treatment.
Treatments vary; from medication to therapy. It all depends on what form of mental health you suffer from. For instance, I suffered from both clinical and social, so I was given a combination of drugs to help with the neurological side and therapy to help with the social side.
Some good tips to keep a healthy mind would be:
Get a hobby: If you aren’t regularly using your mind for something other than the work that you do it’s always good to be able to immerse yourself into an activity that you enjoy. It keeps your mind from stagnating. It builds learning paradigms in your mind and encourages you to learn new things.
Get out more: Go for a walk in the forest or down some off-beat trail. Humans are outdoorsy animals and weren’t supposed to be locked up 24/7. Get some fresh air and soak up that vitamin D from the sun. You’ll feel better mentally, promise.
Explore perspectives: Rather than get locked into your own bubble — regularly go where people like you don’t normally go (whilst keeping safe of course! I don’t mean go to a war zone!); challenge your own narrative on the world, speak to people that would at the core disagree with you. Try to find a common ground. Doing all this will keep your mind very active and healthy.
Reduce Alcohol: Alcohol is a depressant and can slowly indoctrinate the brain in a subconscious way to think that it’s depressed. Sad, but true.
It’s important to keep a healthy mind, else you may fall into all sorts of societal traps and pitfalls that are just waiting for you.
Previously Published on The Relationship Blogger