Keeping mentally fit is no small task. Anxiety and depression are widespread, and many people are unaware of the symptoms of these problems and how destructive they can become over time.
Fortunately, small behavioral modifications can help many people cope with stress and avoid slipping into a bad mental state. Some of these lessons stem from established therapeutic techniques like psychotherapy that focus on changing a person’s thought patterns and consequent outlook.
Stay Grateful and Never Underestimate the Power of Small Daily Improvements
Modalities like psychotherapy often prescribe small measures like performing activities and channeling thoughts that evoke positive images. In many cases, negative thoughts can become self-reinforcing over time, leading people into becoming “trapped” in their own heads.
Meditation, stretching, yoga, walking, and other forms of exercise all are beneficial to ward off mental health challenges. Among many studies, a Journal of Clinical Psychology article notes that aerobic exercises like jogging and swimming have proved to reduce anxiety and depression. This is due to the increase in blood circulation to the brain and its influence on the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis that regulates mood.
Take Time to Self-Reflect and Meditate on Yesterday, Today & Tomorrow
One consistent theme across that practitioners focus on is for people to become aware of their thoughts and feelings. This is sometimes more difficult than it seems, since it can entail recognizing painful thoughts and emotions that are responses to events that have occurred earlier in life.
But in becoming truly aware of these responses, people can reshape their beliefs and attitudes about themselves by reframing their thoughts from negative to positive responses.
Prioritize Hobbies to Ensure You’re a Well-Rounded Person
Far from being trivial, hobbies and pastimes play an important role in maintaining mental health and creating social, well-rounded people. Hobbies help structure time and sometimes can transport people into a state of “flow,” in which they become so absorbed that they lose sense of time. Hobbies can also be a consistent reminder of the multi-dimensional aspect of a person and reinforce self-esteem.
There are many ways to keep positive and avoid falling into an anxious frame of mind. Small measures and ideas gained from different therapeutic techniques can benefit most people.