By Foodism Team
Let’s Talk About Mental Health and Well-Being
Physical health is linked with mental wellness
When it comes to physical health we are all conversant with ways to enhance the same. But unfortunately mental health remains a largely unexplored segment; albeit it’s gradually started gaining importance in light of the increase in cases of suicide but there’s still a long way to go.
Foodism brings you an insight into why mental health matters along with some suggestions for mental well- being –
Why is mental well-being important?
Research claims that people with higher psychological well-being–
- Live healthier and longer lives
- Enjoy a better quality of life
- Experience fewer social problems like – engaging in criminal activities; drug and alcohol abuse; et al
- Earn more vis-à-vis their challenged counterparts and indulge in pro-social behaviour, such as volunteering
So does this push you to improve your psychological well-being? Well here’s an overview of a few things you can do to improve your mental well-being i.e. make you feel more positive and able to get the most out of life -
How to enhance your mental well-being?
CONNECT WITH OTHER PEOPLE
Good relationships can:
- Enhance your sense of belonging and self-worth
- Provide you with an opportunity to share positive experiences
- Extend emotional support and allow you to support others
Here’s sharing some dos and don’ts for building stronger and closer relationships:
- Take time each day to be with your family, for example, try arranging a fixed time to eat dinner together
- Arrange a day out with friends you have not seen for a while
- Switch off the television to talk or play a game with your children, friends or family
- Lunch with a colleague
- Visit a friend or family member who needs support or company
- Volunteer at a local school, hospital or community group
- Maximize technology by staying connected with friends and family through various apps and social media handles
Excessively rely on technology or social media alone to build relationships… abstain from perennially texting, messaging or emailing people
BE PHYSICALLY ACTIVE
Well, this one’s not a new one! Being active is one of the primary success mantras for the health and fitness conscious denizens; but being active plays an active (do excuse the pun!) role in improving your mental well-being also as it –
- Raises your self-esteem
- Enables you to set goals or challenges and achieve them
- Causes chemical changes in your brain which can help to positively change your mood
Here’s sharing some dos and don’ts for being physically active:
- Explore activities to help you get fit – it could be something as basic as walking or jogging!
- Learn activities which you enjoy a comfort level with say - swimming, cycling, aerobics, Zumba or dancing
Spend hours in a gym! The best way here is to find activities you enjoy and make them a part of your routine and life
LEARN NEW SKILLS
Research claims that learning new skills can improve your mental well-being as it -
- Boosts self-confidence and raises self-esteem
- Helps you to build a sense of purpose
- Enables you to connect with others
Agreed that all of us are extremely busy in this modern era but we can still eke out some time to bring learning into our life.
Here’s sharing some dos and don’ts for learning new skills:
- Try learning to cook something new especially healthy food
- Pro-actively volunteer to take up a new responsibility at work for instance - mentoring a junior staff member or improving your presentation skills
- Initiate working on a DIY project, such as fixing a broken bike, garden gate or something bigger
- Enrol for a course at a local college or even on an online portal it could be on any subject ranging from learning a new language; playing a new musical instrument or learning a practical skill such as plumbing
- Explore new hobbies that challenge you, such as writing a blog, taking up a new sport or learning to paint
Force yourself to learn something if it doesn’t interest you; it’s more advisable to find activities you enjoy and make them a part of your life
GIVE BACK TO THE COMMUNITY
Well this one’s something which everyone has been harping on be it family members or mentors or NGOs or management and spiritual gurus – the very act of giving and kindness can help improve your mental wellbeing as it -
- Creates positive feelings and a sense of reward
- Grants you a feeling of purpose and self-worth
- Helps you connect with other people
There is a lot that one can do if one casts an eye it could be:
- Saying thank you to someone for something they have done for you
- Asking loved ones or colleagues how they are and really listening to their answer
- Spending time with friends or elderly relatives who need support or company
- Offering to help someone you know with DIY or a work project
- Volunteering in your community, such as helping at a school, hospital or care home
- Delivering essentials to people who are unwell
- Funding an underprivileged child’s education…the options are endless!
In a world where multi-tasking is a norm asking someone to be mindful and focus on the present moment is like asking for the moon! But trust us paying more attention to the task on hand, your thoughts and feelings, your body and the world around you is a positive step towards improving your mental well-being. The reason being this mindfulness can help you enjoy life more and understand yourself better; besides positively transforming the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges.
And yes, most important…don’t miss out on eating plenty of fruits and vegetables along with foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon. Research claims that dark green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes such as beans and lentils are excellent brain foods.
Remember your physical health is linked to your mental well-being so ensure that you up the same for a healthy, happy and long life!