Brain health is just as important as physical health, but it’s often overlooked. Fortunately, there are plenty of things you can do to stay mentally well and positive. You may not be able to stop negative thoughts or feelings from intruding on your brain space, but you can change the way you think and act to learn how to automatically shift your mood for the better.
Everyone has an occasional bad day, but if these negative emotions persist, it’s time to take action. Just like training your abs helps maintain a healthy body, maintaining mental fitness keeps your mind sharp and happy. Here are 15 mental wellness tips to help you stay positive.
1: Make Time for Yourself Every Day
Start your day with at least 10 minutes to spend with yourself before getting carried away on the day’s agenda. That time for yourself is incredibly important to your mental health, so don’t skip it. Whether you meditate, spend time journaling, or just breathe quietly in the morning, this alone will have a huge impact on your mental wellness.
2: Pay Attention to Your Thoughts
Notice when you are having negative thoughts about yourself or other people. Those are automatic thoughts, and they pop up in every person’s mind. They are not helpful or true, but you can change them through positive self-talk and mindfulness techniques. Practice saying encouraging things to yourself when you hear negative thoughts taking over.
3: Stop Multitasking
It has become socially acceptable to multitask with technology tools including email, social media, and smartphones, but it can have a negative impact on your mental state. Each time you switch gears to answer an email, text, or tweet, you are putting yourself on pause. That break in your flow is not good for your work or personal life. Productivity drops and stresses increase. Make it a point to stay on track with what you are doing.
4: Manage Your Stress
Stress is a part of life, but it can wreak havoc on your mental health. Make an effort to reduce stress as much as possible by practicing deep breathing and setting boundaries with friends, family, and work commitments. Each person has their own way of managing stress, so find what works for you and use it.
5: Have a Good Attitude
Having a good attitude about life and yourself is directly related to your mental wellness. It takes conscious effort to be positive, and it helps when you surround yourself with other people who live in a happy place of positivity. But no one can always maintain a glass-half-full outlook, so having tools to shift negative thoughts into positive thinking takes practice.
6: Make Self-Care a Priority
Self-care has become a popular term, and it’s understandable why. Taking care of yourself is not selfish but rather one of the most positive things you can do to help your mental well-being. When you regularly take time for what makes you feel good, such as eating nutritious foods or taking a break with a good book, you will start to feel better about yourself.
7: Laugh More
Laughing is often referred to as the best medicine, and it’s true for your mental health. A hearty laugh can help reduce stress, boost your immune system, and lower blood pressure. It is contagious, so when you are around people who make you laugh, it will be reflected in your mood. Rather than choosing drama or action on television, try watching comedy instead.
8: Practice Gratitude
Practicing gratitude is an excellent way to lift your spirits. It can be as simple as sitting down at the end of each day and writing down three things that went well or what you are grateful for. This helps counter negative thinking by focusing on positive thoughts instead. Start practicing gratitude today!
9: Keep a Journal
Writing down the thoughts that are going through your mind helps you see them more clearly. It can be difficult to talk yourself out of negative thoughts, but it is easier when you put those words on paper. Try keeping a journal for at least 30 days and watch how much more positive you become.
10: Take Care of Your Health
One of the best ways to maintain mental wellness is by taking good care of your physical health. Exercise regularly, eat nutritious foods, and stay active each day. This will boost your mood, so avoid being sedentary as much as possible. Working out releases endorphins, which alleviate anxiety and depression, so it’s key to finding happiness.
11: Spend Time Outdoors
Spending time outdoors has many benefits for both your physical and mental health. Fresh air and sunshine are great for your mood and can help counter Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Exposure to nature can also reduce stress levels, lower blood pressure, and improve sleep quality. Take a walk outside, go for a hike, or plant a garden to enjoy the outdoors.
12: Connect with Friends and Family
Human connection is essential for a healthy mind and body. Spend time with friends and family members who make you feel good. When you are around people who support you, it strengthens your immune system and helps protect you from stress. Positive relationships are key to maintaining mental wellness.
13: Use Positive Affirmations
Repeating positive affirmations is a great way to change your mindset. When you start to believe the words you are saying, it will be reflected in your attitude and behavior. Choose affirmations that resonate with you and repeat them each day. Some examples include “I am enough,” “I am worthy,” and “I have the power to create my own reality.”
14: Volunteer and Help Others
When you take the time to help others, it has a positive impact on your mental health. Volunteer your time at a local charity, make a donation, or simply offer kind words to someone who needs them. When you focus on the greater good, it shifts your perspective and makes you feel more connected and compassionate.
15: Seek Professional Help
If you are wrestling with mental health, it is a good idea to seek professional help. A therapist can assist you in finding the root cause of your problems and provide you with the tools you need to manage them. There is no shame in getting help, and it could be the best decision you ever make for yourself.
Mental wellness is something that should be taken seriously. When your mind is healthy, everything else in your life falls into place. By following these tips, you can work toward a more positive mindset and improved mental health.
These are just a few of the many ways you can maintain mental wellness. It is important to find what works best for you and to make positive changes in your life. When you take care of your mental health, you are taking care of your entire well-being. Start making changes today and see how much better you feel.