"How are you?"
How many times a day do you ask or answer this question?
If you're like most people, it's at least a few. It's part of polite conversation.
But, how often do you answer it honestly?
Most of the time we say we're "fine" or "good." But the truth is, no matter how strong, skilled, or accomplished we are, sometimes we're not okay.
Everyone Has Mental Health
While physical health reflects the wellbeing of your body, mental health reflects the wellbeing of your emotional, social, and psychological state.
And just like everyone has a body we try to keep healthy, we all have emotions and minds to care for.
Sometimes We're Unwell
Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash
Your mental health can fluctuate just like your physical health.
This is influenced by your behavior, genetics, and environment.
Physically, you can face long-term conditions like diabetes, and short-term illnesses like the flu.
It's the same mentally. You can face long-term conditions like schizophrenia, and shorter-term issues like stress after starting a new job.
Which of the following can influence our mental health?
Developing Healthy Habits
You take care of your physical health through healthy habits like eating nutritious food, exercising, getting enough sleep, and going to the doctor regularly.
In just the same way, you can develop habits to stay mentally healthy. In fact, healthy physical habits can have a positive impact on your mental health.
Other positive mental health habits include:
Writing in a journal
Spending time with loved ones
Talking about your feelings
Asking for help when you're stressed
How should you practice a healthy habit?
Mental health is a complicated topic. But recognizing that we all have mental health, in the same way that we all have physical health, is the first step to taking better care of ourselves and each other.
As you continue with your week, try to become more aware of your mental wellbeing. Check in with yourself regularly by asking:
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