The World Health Organization defines mental wellness as “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her own abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to his or her community.”
There are a lot of commas in that description, which means there are a lot of pieces to the mental wellness puzzle. It is known that diet and exercise can impact overall mental health, but both of those changes take an extreme amount of effort and willpower to start and stick with. Below are some smaller changes that take a little less effort but still produce some positive results.
Tell Yourself Something Positive
The mental state is partially dependent on self-view. By looking in the mirror and only saying positive things about oneself, the overall outlook can change. Many people see a few extra pounds in the mirror, crows feet, adult acne, and other negative things, but take some time to dig deep and notice the positive.
Here are some videos of some opinions that matter most: here and here. Try picturing yourself through a loved one’s eyes if you’re having a hard time with this one.
Write Down Something You’re Grateful For
It is proven that feelings of gratitude are directly related to improved mental health, so it is important to remember the things that matter and make us grateful. Start keeping a gratitude journal and write down three things each night that made you thankful during the day, choose to think about gratitude when sitting at a red light in traffic, or make it a part of family dinner by going around the table and getting everyone to participate. Find what works for you and do it.
Do Something for Someone Else
Helping others has been shown to improve how you feel about yourself and being valued for the work that you do for someone else together increase self-esteem. Take some time to volunteer, pay it forward next time you’re in the drive-thru, or volunteer to carpool. Spend some time helping and thinking of others.
Go to Bed on Time
Getting a good amount of rest also impacts mental wellness. Create a bedtime routine that includes turning screens off at least an hour before bed and go to sleep around the same time each night. It is also important to use the bed as a place to sleep and relax. Don’t take the laptop with work and emails into the bed or eat in the bed on a regular basis.