What Is Mental Health?

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices.

Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood. It plays a great role in the modern days when compared to olden days. In olden days people always lived in joint families, maintained good neighborhood relationships, community living gave people the emotional support. They had the necessary support system always helping them in times of crisis.

In modern days, families have become nuclear, no experiential advice is available and community living is minimized. Someone’s problem is solely to them, to the extent that parents are not able to help their children nor spouses helping each other. This kind of independent living and thinking greatly add to the stress and anxiety levels among the people in the society. Mental wellbeing under the circumstances became the need of the hour.
The nature of mind is- it is always running here and there and is very difficult to focus. Our mind has uncontrolled thoughts throughout a day and if we closely observe them in meditation we will understand that they have a pattern. Further observation leads to understanding that thoughts, words, feeling, deed or action, has patterns.

Any action we perform is preceded by thought and feeling. All this happen in Nanosecond time, before we realize we used a wrong word or action. We tend to repent later, it shows we have no control over the mind.
Many of us do things impulsively and regret later. Let us understand what impulsivity gives us. We are impulse buyers or have impulsive eating habits. We have certain triggers which causes impulsive reactions. Impulsivity gives us a certain level of high, feel achieved and feel happy for a moment. We want to have that gratification for many times and whenever the trigger triggers we automatically tend to behave for want of the momentarily gratification.

Listening to Antharvani helps us understand the triggers and thus avoid impulsivity.

There may arise a question here, what if we are not able to listen to the inner voice and are still very impulsive?

Once we develop little awareness, we will understand the mistakes or learn from the mistakes of being impulsive. This is not a one day process, it may take years to get mastery on certain issues where as some issues can be overcome right away.

Yes, initially it might be difficult to hear the inner voice or Antharvani but with constant practice we can surely achieve. Listening to inner voice gives us the clarity. We can clearly understand our thoughts and its patterns and not get influenced by others.

How do I know my Mental Health Status?

  • The ability to take responsibility for one’s own actions.
  • Check your thoughts—aware of thoughts
  • Living normal- means living with awareness.
  • Having clarity in situations
  • Better Decision making
  • Address self-issues
  • Understand mind patterns, mind games
  • Accepting self
  • Flexibility to handle

Practical ways to look after your Mental Health

It’s important to take care of yourself and get the most from life. Below are 10 practical ways to look after your mental health. Making simple changes to how you live doesn’t need to cost a fortune or take up loads of time. Anyone can follow this advice. Why not start today?

  1. Talk about your feelings –Talking about your feelings can help you stay in good mental health and deal with times when you feel troubled.
  2. Keep active – Regular exercise can boost your self-esteem and can help you concentrate. Exercise keeps the brain and your other vital organs healthy, and is also a significant benefit towards improving your mental health.
  3. Eat well – Your brain needs a mix of nutrients in order to stay healthy and function well, just like the other organs in your body. A diet that’s good for your physical health is also good for your mental health.
  4. Enough Sleep – Sleep is a time for your body to repair and process the stress from the day. It is the time your brain has to unwind. It also allows your body to relax after using tense muscles throughout the day. Sleep acts as the reset button for your stress level. It helps you to avoid serious stress responses such as anxiety. It is important that you get enough sleep and that the sleep you get is of good quality.
  5. Drink sensibly – We often drink alcohol to change our mood. Some people drink to deal with fear or loneliness, but the effect is only temporary. When the drink wears off, you feel worse because of the way the alcohol has affected your brain and the rest of your body. Drinking is not a good way to manage difficult feelings.
  6. Ask for help – None of us are superhuman. We all sometimes get tired or overwhelmed by how we feel or when things don’t go to plan. If things are getting too much for you and you feel you can’t cope, ask for help. Your family or friends may be able to offer practical help or a listening ear.
  7. Take a break – A change of scene or a change of place is good for your mental health. It could be a five-minute pause from cleaning your kitchen, a half-hour lunch break at work, or a weekend exploring somewhere new. A few minutes can be enough to de-stress you. Give yourself some ‘me time’.
  8. Do something you’re good at – What do you love doing? What activities can you lose yourself in? What did you love doing in the past? Enjoying yourself can help beat stress. Doing an activity you enjoy probably means you’re good at it, and achieving something boosts your self-esteem.
  9. Accept who you are – We’re all different. It’s much healthier to accept that you’re unique than to wish you were more like someone else. Feeling good about yourself boosts your confidence to learn new skills, visit new places and make new friends. Good self-esteem helps you cope when life takes a difficult turn.
  10. Care for others -‘Friends are really important… We help each other whenever we can, so it’s a two-way street, and supporting them uplifts me.’ Caring for others is often an important part of keeping up relationships with people close to you. It can even bring you closer together.
  11. Practice meditation – You can start meditating for as little as 20 minutes per day.