Relationships: A Different Perspective

As human beings we all naturally crave companionship and friendships with others. No matter how much time you devote to improving your mental and emotional health, you will still need the company of others to feel and be your best. Humans are social creatures with emotional needs for relationships and positive connections to others.. We’re not meant to survive, let alone thrive, in isolation. Our social brains crave companionship, even when experience has made us shy and distrustful of others.
With that being said, establishing healthy relationships is crucial to a healthy mental state of mind and being. Traditionally, people who are emotionally healthy are in control of their emotions and their behavior. They are able to handle life’s inevitable challenges, build strong relationships, and lead productive, fulfilling lives. When bad things happen, they’re able to bounce back and move on. Therefore, it’s important to take note and gage where your relationships are at so you can make necessary changes with others involved in your life.

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Are you a Night-owl?

Aside from healthy diets, exercising, finding a healthy balance, and working to channel your thoughts to provide the best metal health possible, which all play a great role, obtaining the right amount of sleep is just as critical. Historically, sleep was thought to be a passive state. However, sleep is now known to be a dynamic process, and many people don’t realize our brains are still active during sleep. Sleep certainly affects our physical and mental health, and is essential for the normal full functioning body as well as our immune system. The effect of sleep on the immune system affects one’s ability to fight disease and endure sickness. This may explain feelings of illness you may have after a considerable amount of lost sleep.

Sleeping fewer hours than recommended puts young adults like myself at a increased risk that any mental health problems they already have will become persistent. People without a history of mental problems were at increased risk of developing mental problems if they slept fewer than five hours per night. So it is important to ask yourself if that extra half hour of tv  and web browsing each night is really all that important?

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Healthy Diet= Healthy Life

Something that has becoming a more rapid issue in this day and age, especially in America, is the practice of eating healthy. Most people don’t realize that food doesn’t just feed our bodies, it also nourishes our minds. If you are living with mental illness, eating well is especially important for you, because what you eat can affect your daily life, mood and energy level.

A healthy diet emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains and fat-free or low-fat milk products and should include lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs and nuts. Consequences of unhealthy eating habits can result in many physical health problems due to off balance mental health. Mentally ill people tend to overeat because of their issues. Some suffer from depression or anxiety, while others have extreme PMS or bipolar problems. The list is endless. Due to such problems, they tend to have insomnia, memory problems and lack of concentration.

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Get Up and Move Around!

We all know that exercise can help significantly with many physical benefits, such as improving the bodily functions (muscles, lungs, circulatory system, and heart),  and lowering stress levels.  What many people dont know is the fact that a sound exercise program also improves mental health. Here are some ways in which exercise is medicine for the mind.

You don’t have to be suffering from a clinical or diagnosed Mental Illness to get substantial mental health benefits from exercise and fitness.  One study found that short workouts of 8 minutes in length could help lower sadness, tension and anger along with improving resistance to disease in healthy people.  Many people exercise to boost confidence along with reducing anxiety and stress, all of which contribute to psychological health and well-being.  So, exercise can be viewed as a preventative or wellness activity that may actually help prevent physical and emotional conditions.  Even short bursts of activity help individuals feel better, which means that you don’t have to spend hours at the gym to gain real mental health benefits.

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Finding a balance

Something I have struggled with especially lately is finding a healthy balance between school, work and my personal life. Being a full time college student and working 4 days a week does not leave me with a lot of time for any outlets for extracurricular activities. When I first started this overwhelming day to day life schedule I was always finding myself feeling overwhelmed and stressed. This is something I learned to overcome the hard way.The first thing to point out is that work isn’t separate from life — it’s a part of it. For some people, it’s not a fun part of life, but for others, it’s a passion. Either way, it’s a part of our lives, good or bad.Of course, when people talk about a work-life balance, they mean that we should find a balance between work and our personal lives, which is definitely true. But it’s important to realize that if work is really something you love, you don’t need to cut it short in order to spend more time at home in front of the television.

So the key is to remember that what we’re looking for is a balance between the things we love — not just work and the rest of life, but work and family and hobbies and chores and everything else. Here are some key tips I found to be very beneficial in achieving the life balance I was looking for.

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Power of Positive Thinking

One simple attribute that can change life at school, work, home and life in general is the power of positive positive thinking. Positive thinking, unlike many attributes, is something that you can make a habit of today. We often hear people say: “Think positive!”, to someone feeling down, stressed or unmotivated.  But most people do not take these words seriously, usually dismissing such words without much thought. Sure it might be easier said than done, as many things in life are, but finding meaning and believing in this phrase we hear so often can certainly be done. How many people do you have stopped to think what the power of positive thinking really means? Have you?

Abraham Lincoln said it best ” Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”The biggest difference between people is their attitudes. For some, learning is enjoyable and exciting. For others, learning is a drudgery. For many, learning is just okay, something required on the road to a job. So how do you start thinking more positive? Here are just a few of the many ways to start.

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Feeling Blue?

Many people this day and age suffer from depression and don’t even know it. Some might say feelings of depression are normal while others believe the symptoms are simply embedded in your personality. Whatever the reasoning may be, it is crucial to pay attention to such feelings. Everyone has their moods and knows what triggers them, but whether you can control that or not is the basis for determining whether you are just simply feeling blue or if you really are clinically depressed.

Depression is a “whole-body” illness, involving your body, mood, and thoughts. It affects the way you eat and sleep, the way you feel about yourself, and the way you think about things. A depressive disorder is not the same as a passing blue mood. It is not a sign of personal weakness or a condition that can be willed or wished away. People with a depressive illness cannot merely “pull themselves together” and get better. Without treatment, symptoms can last for weeks, months, or years. Appropriate treatment, however, can help most people who suffer from depression.

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