If it’s one thing that 2020 has taught us, it’s that emotional & mental health is something we can’t ignore until we have the time to take care of it. In our modern world, there are a wide variety of stressors that can be detrimental to our emotional well-being. In fact, up to 46% of adults in America experience a mental health issue during their life. Learning how to react to these stressors is key to being able to live a full life and happy life.
Something equally important is being able to avoid these stressors entirely when possible. Below, we’ll discuss what to watch out for and what steps we can take in the right direction. With a little of both, we’ll be able to not only develop our mental fitness, but maintain it as well.
Things To Avoid Or Take In Moderation
Before you start taking positive steps, it’s always a good idea to take a step back and ask what, if any, negative factors are contributing to poor emotional health. We’ll discuss a few of them below that should either be stopped, cut back, or moderated.
Media Or Screen Time
Overexposure to social media has been shown to contribute to negative emotions in some studies. Additionally, blue light has a negative impact on the ability to fall asleep. This is due to suppressing the release of melatonin. Try to cut back on phone, tv, and computer time before bed.
Foods which contain low levels of vitamins can negatively affect many aspects of our mental health. Vitamin B12 deficiency can cause depression, mania, and in some cases, even psychosis. Lack of niacin can also lead to dementia.
Staying Indoors Too Much
Staying inside all the time is no fun, but it can also be damaging to our health. We receive valuable vitamin D from direct sunlight on our skin. Without enough vitamin D, constant fatigue and depression can occur.
Steps We Can To Take To Stay Mentally Healthy
These next few steps are all about creating healthy habits that will not only benefit you physically, but support your emotional well-being.
Consume Vitamin-rich Foods And Supplements
A healthy balanced diet filled with vitamin-rich foods has been shown to keep stress levels lower. Healthy foods such as spices, fruits, and probiotics can even improve our mental health. The cannabinoid terpene known as CBD may even have the potential to help with anxiety.
Reduce Alcohol Or Other Recreational Substance Use
Alcohol and marijuana may also be substances that are a good idea to avoid when looking to improve emotional well-being. There is evidence they can affect focus, concentration, and sleep cycles.
Getting enough exercise is extremely important for our bodies. It’s also essential for keeping our brains healthy as well. Regularly exercising has been shown to improve both depression and anxiety symptoms. Exercising releases endorphins, which give us a sense of well-being. It also takes our mind off of stressors and gives us confidence.
Getting outdoors helps us in so many ways. It’s long been common knowledge that getting a breath of fresh air can help calm our minds. It’s also true that spending time in the great outdoors can improve short term memory. Being in nature can reduce stress hormones and even blood pressure.
One Step At A Time
While changing habits is always difficult, these small changes listed above can make a significant impact on mental health and fitness. It’s important to remember that not all these changes need to be made at once. Going at your own pace and trying to improve areas one at a time is the best way to keep your emotional health on the right track without stressing yourself out.