Speaking Mental Health
Forward Times Mental Health Advisors
Valuing your mental health and protecting your peace takes effort and positive thought processes. With most people wearing many different hats, we must learn to foster our own healthy space. I often explain to my clients that protecting your peace is simply maintaining your own environment for growth and gatekeeping your state of mind. At times, this may seem to be challenging due to there being so many distractions and things happening in our community that may impact our feelings and sense of safety. There are several ways to protect your peace and take care of your mental health.
- Reduce stress – carving out 5 minutes each day to practice deep breathing and reflect may help to reduce stress. You may take a nature walk or listen to relaxing music to slow down your heart rate and lower anxiety.
- Change your mindset – journaling helps to keep a log of your mental processes and perceptions. Having this information allows you to reframe your thoughts which may have a positive impact on your feelings and behavior. Also, make a note of the things that you can and cannot control and keep a positive mindset of working on the things that you can control in your life.
- Do not overextend yourself – learning to say no may be more challenging for some because it tends to leave feelings of guilt. Actually, having the ability to say ‘no’ is a strength and a sign that you are being aware of what you are able or willing to commit to. Saying ‘no’ helps you to establish healthy boundaries and also provides clarity about what others can expect from you.
- Exercise – participating in a regular exercise routine helps to clear your mind, reduce stress, and increase memory retention. Keep in mind that your physical and mental health are connected, so engaging in physical activities that will improve your physical health will also help to improve mental well-being.
- Detox – remove toxic people from your life. If there is anyone who brings negative energy to your space and causes you to feel uncomfortable, you have the right to limit your time with those individuals as necessary.
- Declutter – it has been stated that your outer personal space represents your inner space. Cleaning and decluttering your space may increase your sense of comfort and provide you more mental clarity. Our physical space is not the only space that needs to be decluttered. Clear your mind from multiple expectations, fears, and social media. Monitor your mental processes and replace negative thoughts with more positive ones.
Angela M. Powell, Ph.D., LPC-S, CSC
Dr. Angela M. Powell is a Licensed Professional Counselor and owner of Progressive Counseling & Consulting, LLC., specializing in youth trauma, anxiety, and depression.