Mental health is the sum of our social, emotional and psychological well being. It is one of the most taboo topics in society today for various reasons. Many needing to seek treatment for mental health conditions go without it, out of fear that they may be looked upon as weak, or in some cases, they may not understand the major heath implications of ignoring an ongoing condition. Although medical treatment is available, here are 10 proven methods that can be used to improve your mental health. The list will start off with the first method being of the utmost importance.
1. Devote time to self reflection
Gary P. Pisano, Professor of Business Administration at Harvard Business School, conducted a random sampling of 202 people, showing that reflection is a powerful mechanism behind learning. One group was instructed to reflect on the pre-test, in order to form a strategy on how to better perform on the next test. The second group was instructed to make notes of their strategies and thoughts, while being informed that the notes were going to be shared with others. The third group received no instruction before receiving the second test. The results from the second test showed that both groups that were given the task of reflecting on the pre-test, did a lot better in comparison to the third group.
The American Philosopher and Psychologist John Dewey coined the phrase: “We do not learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on experience.” Bill George, Professor of Management Practice and Harvard Business School, emphasizes the importance of making it a daily practice to set aside at minimum, 20 minutes a day for self reflection. A proper evaluation of self, in relation to understanding your life story and how you have been impacted by people, as well as your experiences, will help you gain more insight into who you are. There is a direct association between mindfulness and brain changes from anger and anxiety to a sense of calm and well being.
- Write down your thoughts in a journal
- Go for a light jog or walk
- Be honest but not too hard on yourself