This article is for informative purposes only and is not intended to diagnose or treat any condition. Please reach out to a qualified mental health professional if you are struggling.
You’ve probably heard the saying “the mind and body are connected” many times before. This saying is very true with the decisions that you make physically having a huge impact on your psychological health; even subtle things can have a lasting impact. To better understand what exactly this means, in this article, we’ll be looking at six subtle (or not so subtle) things that have an impact on your mental health.
1. Social Media
Social media is a great tool for keeping in touch with the ones you care about, and mindless scrolling can remedy a boring situation. However, did you know that excessive usage of social media can be harmful? Social media can make it easy to compare yourself to others and feel that you are lacking. In many, it can increase depressive and anxious symptoms (McGregor 2021) Additionally, it increases your risk of seeing news and other information that can bring you down (Taylor 2021). Sometimes it’s best to take a step away
While procrastinating is a way to avoid things you need to do, it can also be incredibly harmful to your mental health. Ever notice when you are putting off an important task that it is always on your mind? Even though you are trying to avoid the anxiety of doing a task, you are still creating anxiety by thinking about it (Taylor 2021). Instead, try to find ways to tackle your smaller objectives first so that you can save yourself time and energy for your bigger projects.
3. Staying in the Past or Focusing on the Future
The past can seem comforting whereas the future may seem scary. On the other hand, the past may be dismal and you focus all your energy on having a better future. Spending too much time in one extreme can be harmful for your mental health. Whether you are having a difficult time processing what has happened before or are worrying about what’s next, it’s important to find ways to be grounded in the now. Seeking help from a qualified mental health professional is a great option in these cases (Taylor 2021).
4. Lack of Movement
Getting plenty of exercise is important not only to keep fit, but also to keep balance in your mind. Did you know that a lack of movement can harm your mental health? The amount of exercise you need is dependent on who you are as a person, but overall people who find opportunities to stay in motion do better over the long term than those who are sedentary (Young 2014). Something as simple as a 20 minute walk can brighten your day.
5. Your Social Life
Humans are social creatures so having a strong network can be greatly beneficial to your well being. Isolation can bring out negative emotions, so finding ways to get out can improve that area of your life (The Scientific World 2020). Getting involved with your community by volunteering or participating in club activities are a great way to begin growing your network.
6. Your Work
Work is a place where many of us spend a majority of our time. If your working situation is toxic, it’s likely to have a big impact on your mental health as well. Making sure you’re with the right people, doing something you enjoy, and are in a position that you are comfortable in can make a huge difference in how you feel about your life (Scientific World 2020).
Your lifestyle choices have a major impact on your mental and emotional health; taking care of your outside is as important as taking care of your inside. As always, when dealing with any kind of health problem, physical or mental, it’s important to work with a qualified professional. Getting in touch with the right person can be a great first step to improving your quality of life. Let us know what you have learned from this article. What are some of the changes you can make right now? What are some other ways that the mind and body are connected? Let us know in the comments!
- Jennings, M. K. S. (2021, June 18). 11 Best Foods to Boost Your Brain and Memory. Healthline. www.healthline.com/nutrition/11-brain-foods#TOC_TITLE_HDR_8
- McGregor, C. (2021, October 24). 6 Subtle Triggers That Wreck Mental Health Slowly – Claire McGregor. Medium. claire-mcgregor.medium.com/everyday-triggers-that-damage-your-mental-health-4a475846dcef
- Mind. (2017, October). What causes mental health problems? Mind, the Mental Health Charity – Help for Mental Health Problems. www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/mental-health-problems-introduction/causes/
- Taylor, K. (2021, June 24). 6 Subtle Things That Significantly Mess With Your Anxiety. Medium. medium.com/the-ascent/6-subtle-things-that-significantly-mess-with-your-anxiety-a1768682cd89
- The Scientific World & The Scientific World. (2020, July 9). How Does Your Lifestyle Affect Your Mental Health? The Scientific World – Let’s Have a Moment of Science. www.scientificworldinfo.com/2020/07/how-does-lifestyle-affect-your-mental-health.html
- Young, J. (2014, October 2). 9 Lifestyle Factors That Can Affect Your Mental Health. PsychologyToday. www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/when-your-adult-child-breaks-your-heart/201410/9-lifestyle-factors-can-affect-your-mental