Our mental health affects nearly every aspect of our lives, including how we handle stressful situations, how we feel, and even how we build relationships. Maintaining our mental health helps us to live healthier, more fulfilling lives.
According to the Canadian Mental Health Organization, “almost one half (49%) of those who feel they have [personally dealt with] depression or anxiety have never gone to see a doctor about this problem. Stigma or discrimination attached to mental illness presents a serious barrier, not only to diagnosis and treatment but also to acceptance in the community.”
Helping to eliminate the stigma around mental health and wellness is essential, but it is not the only way to improve your mental health.
Strong mental health and wellness is not simply the absence of issues or illnesses. Improving and maintaining mental health is about more than treating the symptoms of mental illness; it is about instilling practices into your life and routine to feel and be the best you can.
Help Guide has shared that people who maintain their mental health and wellness have:
- A sense of contentment,
- A zest for living and the ability to laugh and have fun,
- The ability to deal with stress and bounce back from adversity,
- A sense of meaning and purpose, in both their activities and their relationships,
- The flexibility to learn new skills and adapt to change,
- A balance between work and play, rest and activity, etc.,
- The ability to build and maintain fulfilling relationships,
- And self-confidence and high self-esteem.
October 10th is World Mental Health Day. In honour of this day, Origin Active Lifestyle Communities, with active senior living communities located throughout Canada, has compiled a list of five ways to maintain your mental health and wellness.
1. Learn How to Manage Stress
Stress is an inevitable part of life, but learning how to cope with this stress is a crucial element to maintaining your mental health and wellness. Pinpoint the causes and triggers of your stress and find a healthy way to manage it that works for you. Stress management techniques that can also keep you active include daily walks, yoga, or tai chi.
Exercise benefits more than just your physical health. When you participate in physical activity, your brain releases chemicals, such as endorphins, that improve your mood, relieve feelings of stress and anxiety, and even improve your memory.
Additionally, when you take care of your physical health, your self-esteem increases, positively impacting your mental health and wellness.
3. Consume a Brain-Healthy Diet
It is no secret that the foods we eat impact our overall health and well-being. It should come as no surprise that certain foods can specifically target your brain. Consuming a diet that is high in brain-healthy foods, such as whole grains, dark vegetables, and berries, is a great way to provide your mind with the nutrients it needs to improve and maintain your mental health and wellness.
4. Get Plenty of Quality Sleep
We have all been told that we need to get a certain number of hours of sleep per night, but the quality of these hours of sleep matters. If you sleep for eight hours a night, but spend those hours tossing and turning, you are not doing yourself any favours. Over time, a lack of quality sleep can negatively affect your mood, energy, ability to handle stress, and mental sharpness.
5. Stay Connected to Family & Friends
Now more than ever, socialization and connectivity can help combat feelings of stress and uncertainty. Being a part of a social network creates a self-belonging and self-worth – positively impacting your mental health and wellness. Even in small increments, social interaction provides us with a support group and an outlet to discuss stressors so that we can lead more fulfilling and positive lives.
At Origin Active Lifestyle Communities, we know the importance of prioritizing our mental health and wellness. We are committed to providing individuals throughout our active senior living communities with quality care that focuses on improving overall health and wellness, as well as services and amenities that promote physical and mental stimulation and socialization.
We invite you to contact a member of our team and learn more about the Origin Way!