Our overall mental health is something that is an ongoing, ever-changing, progressive status.
It’s not like you magically get to “happy” and just stay there. Mental health is something that is effected by every decision, action, and reaction in our day-to-day lives.
That is why it is critical to understand the seemingly simple bad habits that can be derailing our mental health that we often overlook.
Not Having an Established Routine
You might not think that establishing a “bed time” as an adult would be something that effects your mental health, but it does. Our brains are funny little creatures in that they want a routine. Mixing that routine up leaves our brains confused, leading to mental fatigue. It’s hard to be in a good mental state when your brain is tired. The same goes for eating schedules and other aspects of your routine. Your brain is so closely tied to all of the other systems in the body, so when your routine is erratic, so is your brain.
I’ve written several articles that deal with our dependencies of technology. Especially when it comes to being attached to social media and other endless streams of input. The more energy you focus on everything that is going on in the world, the less energy you have to focus on yourself. It’s important to take the time to focus on you and your immediate surroundings. The easiest fix is to just set your phone down, turn it off if you can, and just let your brain wander on its own.
Everyday we are presented with challenges, whether on our own or through outside influence. There are just so many things that we can’t control that we get faced with. 9 times out of 10 it is better to address those issues directly than it is to file them away and let them sit. Often times when we do that, those issues don’t get resolved and become a bigger problem. Granted, not everything can be handled directly at the time, which brings me to my next point:
Write it Down
Trying to keep a running to-do list in your head is a habit that can wreak havoc on your mental state. Constantly trying to remember everything keeps your brain in a state of turmoil. It’s much easier to just write everything down, and take that strain off of your brain. There are dozens of productivity apps out there that can help you with that, or just a simple piece of paper and pen.
You are What You Eat
Again, with your brain and gut being so directly connected, healthy eating habits mean a healthy brain. Diets like the Keto Diet feature increased brain function for a reason. Good eating habits in the morning are the most important, because that sets the standard for the day. Instead of reaching for the donut, maybe try reaching for some egg whites or a healthy smoothie instead.
Pay Attention to What Got You Here
If you find yourself in a relative state of good mental health, don’t disregard the good habits that got you there. Maintaining good habits is just as important as breaking the bad habits. Do what you did to get you to that point in your life and work to improve.