Our health whether it be mental or physical is so important and for me, I see them as being linked, they go hand in hand, when one feels good, the other seems to too, or we feel more able to take action and make a change.
Thankfully there has been much progress in recent years in terms of normalising the conversation around mental health with many people speaking out and raising awareness. However, we still have a way to go, there is still a stigma within society, and my wish is that together we can bring about change.
The perception of the term mental health is often that there is something up, however I believe if we changed the focus to mental wellness instead, we can start to change the perception around it and open further conversations.
I urge everyone if you are feeling low, overwhelmed, lost, lonely, confused and so many other things, to reach out, to seek support and advice, whether that be from a trained professional like me, or your GP, a local or national mental health organisation or simply a loved one, there are people to help and support you, you are not alone, and things can get better. I work with people who have often thought that they could never be happy again, but with the right support it is possible and reaching out is brave and courageous, not a failing or a weakness as historically society has had us believe.
I believe that if we focus on mental health and wellness, the perception changes, we all want to be well, we all want to feel good, happy, fulfilled and this is something we can talk about more easily. We don’t mind saying we want to become physically fitter, stronger, healthier, it is seen as a positive thing, something to strive for and my wish is that this becomes the way mental, fitness, wellness, strength and resilience is perceived.
So if we change our perspective to working towards mental wellness and fitness, what would be different?:
Would it be easier to discuss?
Would it be easier to take action, to put things in place and make time for it, the way we do our physical health?
Would it mean we could say no to more things which don’t support our mental wellness?
Would we say yes to more things which did support our mental wellness?
Would we recognise it more quickly and seek support if and when we needed it?
Would we take action sooner if we viewed it from this perspective, rather than hiding from it?
The things which support our mental wellbeing are different for each of us and that is ok, we are all different, but knowing what works for us is so important, having our go to basic things really helps. For me the top thing is being outside in nature, my favourite place is the beach, but I also have a regular yoga and meditation practice, I love to read, connect with friends, there are many things which I know help me to feel better.
I urge you to take a moment to think what works for you, so when your mental health isn’t where you’d like it to be, just like with your physical health, you have an idea of some go to things which you know will help you feel better… and as I like to say, I have never felt worse after having a walk in nature! Did you know that even taking a 10 min walk outside makes a difference to our wellbeing?
Until next time,