Together, let’s make mental health and well-being for all a global priority.
The most valuable investment you can make in your lifetime is in your own health and wellness.
#WorldMentalHealthDay is celebrated across the globe, making the topic a foremost priority for us all. The intent of the day is to remind us to pause and think about our mental health (and that of the people we care about) and what we can do to protect it.
Today, we are privileged to be in a scenario where discussions on mental health and well-being are both encouraged and readily accessible. But the stigma around mental health issues remains to this day. Mental Health Day gives us the opportunity to talk about these issues in a safe space, and break the misconceptions around them. It reminds us of the significance of speaking out and seeking help when you need it.
Throughout our lives, we find that our mental health continuum fluctuates in response to changing stressors and situations. Issues often surface as children become adolescents, the most common among them being conditions such as depression, anxiety, and eating disorders. Particularly, women are highly vulnerable to a range of issues, from anxiety-based disorders to chronic illnesses, including perinatal depression, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and menopausal depression. I often overhear women saying that they are overwhelmed by distressing feelings, but they don’t know why. It’s easy to shrug these comments off under the notion that, maybe, they’re just having a bad day.
Maybe they’re not.
Any advancement in gender equality and women empowerment would be incomplete without acknowledging the mental health crises that women experience as part of their daily struggles. Redressing the specific challenges women face requires us to destigmatize these issues and normalize discussions around them. If you know someone who is suffering from mental health issues, don’t hold back; motivate them to seek professional help. Let them know they’re not alone. A small bit of reassurance can go a long way in helping them overcome the crippling issues that come with a troubled mind.
Mental health issues are often serious problems that warrant medical intervention. In addition to receiving the appropriate medical care, spend a bit of time following these six simple steps that can help usher positivity into your day and improve your mental health:
- Enjoy your time in the sun – get plenty of sunlight and physical exercise
- Get adequate sleep and quality “me time”
- Develop productive coping mechanisms, like finding humor in everyday stress situations
- Don’t hesitate – reach out to your personal network for emotional and social support
- Stay hopeful – try to find positivity and gratitude even in the most trying times
- Be kind to people, especially yourself – be your biggest cheerleader