Over the past year and a half, we have seen the importance of mental health through this pandemic. Thus, the need to celebrate May being Mental Health Awareness Month. This month helps bring awareness to the importance of paying attention to your mental health. It also helps educate each other on being more tolerant, open, and accepting of others. In a recent study, mental health claims for teens increased by 97%. Learning the importance of mental health and more importantly, how to cope will help your overall well-being.
Here are five ways to stay mentally healthy:
Exercise: It is recommended to get at least 30 minutes of exercise a day. This number is not just to maintain a healthy body but also a healthy mindset. Exercise improves mental health by reducing anxiety, depression, negative mood and improves self-esteem and cognitive function (National Health Institute). As the weather continues to improve, be sure to get outside! If you do not go to the gym to work out, you can simply go outside and take a walk in your neighborhood or a park.
- Journal: Being able to write down any feelings, thoughts, or ideas can reduce anxiety, help face problems, and allow reflection. It allows one to take a step back, consider possible solutions, and relax. Try journaling when you are upset, overwhelmed, or angry.
- Find Hobbies: Research shows that people with hobbies are less likely to suffer from stress, low mood, and depression. Activities that get you out and about can make you feel happier and more relaxed. Hobbies can include something social like going to a fun class or something relaxing like scrapbooking.
- Ask for Help: While being open and connecting with others is critical, it is also important to know when to ask for help. Being open to talking to someone, even short-term, can be critical for mental health. Find a trusted friend, adult, or counselor and ask for help. This can have long-lasting impacts on your overall wellbeing.
- Mindfulness Exercises: Practicing mindfulness allows one to engage in meaningful, calming strategies to help relieve stress, increase self-awareness, and reflect. There are numerous strategies that can help you practice mindfulness. These strategies include: breathing exercises, goal setting, meditation, and purposeful journaling.
These methods are proven to help lower stress, anxiety, and negative feelings. You can practice these methods through your daily activities. You can help promote Mental Health Awareness by talking to family and friends and educating yourself.
In addition to the internship preparation, college admission and financial literacy programs, Believe & Inspire offers a variety of programs that can help teach you to succeed in the future. These classes are helpful in gaining life skills that help young adults succeed in school, life, and future careers. To find out more about our program offerings, go to https://believeandinspire.org/.