Exercising is not just about physical health. The point of exercising is to also feel good mentally. Exercise helps decrease your anxiety, improves your mood, promotes the birth of new neurons in your brain and elevates your self-esteem and confidence. Not to mention, exercising feels amazing! When you feel physically and mentally good, you radiate that positive energy into the world and people can sense it; this can lead to an improvement in your relationships! Start with baby steps if you don’t currently exercise: every day, go for a 20 minute walk on the street. After doing this for a week or two, include some jogging, fitness bikes, weights or whatever you enjoy. You’ll notice soon enough how beneficial exercising can be for your mental health.
Everyone talks about what they love about social media, but the negative aspects are often left out. Social media can be toxic and detrimental to your mental health when you are exposed to negative comments. These negative comments can be very powerful and make you feel sad at times. Social media is also toxic if you are constantly comparing yourself with people on Instagram who post exotic and wealthy pictures. This can make you feel sad as well by comparing your life which lacks those elements of materialism. When using social media, keep your mental health in mind and learn to spot and eliminate the negative aspects of them.
When psychiatrists inform you of your diagnosis, they are not doing it with the intention of labeling you with an illness to make you feel bad. A diagnosis is given to you to inform you of what we think may be going on and as a guide for treatment. Psychiatric diagnoses do not define you as a person. It’s important to mention this because many patients experience an uncomfortable feeling when certain psychiatrists slap a diagnosis on to them. Informing patients of their diagnosis is very important when it comes to delivery of the information; empathy and being nonjudgmental are crucial to making patients feel comfortable. At the end of the day, we are here to help you overcome your symptoms and lead a happy and fulfilling life again.
Psychoanalysis is based on the Freudian school of thought that our unconscious mind contains repressed thoughts, drives, traumatic experiences, memories and unresolved childhood conflicts that influence our present thoughts and behaviors. By accessing your unconscious mind through analysis of your transference during therapy, you can gain a better understanding of yourself and why you say and do the things that you do. Besides formal psychoanalytic therapy with a therapist, you can also analyze yourself when you have free time on your hands. This is helpful to better understand your interactions and behavior, but make sure that you’re not overdoing it; too much self-analysis can potentially make you rigid if you’re always thinking about why you said this and did that. A healthy dose of analysis is the best way to go.
Manipulators are all around us. Sometimes they are our friends, family members, acquaintances, coworkers or strangers. Manipulators can also use fear tactics to further attempt to control your thoughts and behaviors. It’s important that you learn how to catch onto manipulative behavior so that you can protect your mental health. It’s not hard for someone to attempt to manipulate you but it can be difficult to catch onto their behavior if you’re not aware of it in the first place!
Millions of people all over the world experience panic attacks. These occur out of the blue and involve a great sense of doom, fear and sometimes even physical symptoms. Panic attacks can be treated with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and/or antidepressants. Don’t be afraid to seek therapy. Would you rather take a chance with therapy and medications or continue to suffer from panic attacks while in public?
Approaching your day by being thankful is something we always hear about but rarely apply. It’s such an easy tweak to your mindset but gets lost in your daily stressors and struggles. By being thankful more often, you will notice your mental health improving. But you may ask, why be thankful when I have so many bad things happening to me? And I’ll reply, maybe these “bad things” are happening so you can be more thankful for what you do have in the first place! Life is not always smooth-sailing; the downs that follow the ups are necessary to build up your character and increase your wisdom, but the process does become smoother when you are consistently thankful for what you have.
Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)
Many of us experience fatigue at the start of the week but feel great on the weekends. This mental fatigue is likely related to burnout at work. Counteracting burnout involves instilling a consistently positive mindset every day and making the most of what you have. You’re more likely to experience burnout when you’re not consistently being thankful for what you have. When you focus on the negatives in your life without appreciating the positives, work becomes more mundane, stressful and exhausting, increasing your chances of experiencing fatigue on Monday mornings and an eventual burnout.
Many of us underestimate the power and benefits of a good night’s sleep. Consistently going to sleep around 9-10pm will help your mood, concentration and memory. Establishing an excellent sleep hygiene will pay off in the short and long run! But realistically speaking, we are too distracted by technology, social media, Netflix and cell phones. If you learn to become disciplined by cutting out technology at 9-10pm and training your mind to fall asleep, you will start to notice positive changes in your mental health!
Some of us never felt isolated prior to the pandemic while many of us became even more isolated during the pandemic. Either way, isolation is a breeding ground for mental illness. Three ways of dealing with it include going outside, socializing and exercising. While it may seem obvious, you’d be surprised at how many people avoid taking advantage of being outdoors, socializing more in person or exercising to improve their physical and mental health.