Looking after your own mental health is one of the most important forms of self-care. Many of us pay great attention to diet, skincare, and physical fitness — but may fail to invest in our mental health. It’s not always immediately apparent if your mental health isn’t ideal. The truth is that it is far too easy to become accustomed to living with depression, anxiety, or other mental health symptoms
In this article, Cottonwood Tucson discusses committing to taking better care of your mental health in the new year.
What Can I Do To Improve My Mental Health?
Even if you don’t have a formal diagnosis or don’t believe you have a mental health condition like depression — there are always things you can do to improve your mental health. The world has become a very busy, very demanding place. Between the 24-hour news cycle and the ever-present social media buzz, it’s rare to find a moment when you’re not being overstimulated.
The devices we carry around with us everywhere we go are more than just utility items. The Internet, social media, games, and apps are all designed to elicit a dopamine response. This can be a negative or a positive depending upon how we use them and how often.
The first step to improving your mental health is to simply become more aware of it. Give your mental health at least as much attention as you do your physical health and appearance. One of the downsides of all of the distractions and diversions in our world is that they make it easier for people to lose a sense of their own happiness.
- Do other people often ask you “what’s wrong?”
- When you think about the future, do you feel hopeful or anxious?
- Can you enjoy activities by yourself? Are you uncomfortable being alone?
- Are you taking enough time to be alone with your thoughts, without distraction?
- Do you become uncomfortable if you’re not being stimulated or entertained constantly?
- Are you happy? — Did you need to take some time to think about it before answering?
Realizing Happiness and Pursuing Self-Actualization
You might be surprised by how many people don’t realize that they are unhappy, or that they could be much happier and more satisfied with their lives. We are creatures of habit. Becoming comfortable with or at least accustomed to discomfort, anxiety, or unhappiness is astonishingly easy. Too many of us settle for much less happiness than we deserve.
One of the best ways to become happier and more satisfied is by finding more purpose and meaning in your life. Helping someone else without expecting anything in return is an incredibly powerful thing. Absolutely everyone is capable of doing something to help others. Another way to find meaning and purpose is to pursue a passion. Nearly everyone has something they’ve always wanted to learn to do. What’s your bucket list item for 2024?
Finally, there is gratitude. It’s impossible to be truly happy and at peace without gratitude. The best part is that becoming more grateful is easier than you think. There are dozens of different exercises for enhancing your gratitude. Pick one and commit to practicing it in 2024. You’ll be grateful you did, we guarantee it.
6 Ways To Commit To Better Mental Health in 2024
1 – Raise Your Mental Health Awareness
Take the time to get in touch with yourself. Listen to what your heart is telling you about your happiness. Consider integrating meditation, prayer, or other forms of quiet reflection into your routine. Seek peace and hold onto it whenever and wherever you find it.
2 – Digital Detox
This will be a tough one for many of us. Remember what we said above about how devices and apps are designed to keep us coming back? Disconnecting yourself from the digital world can make a real difference. Try to give yourself at least one day a week where you stay off the phone, or at least avoid social media and ‘doom-scrolling’.
3 – Prioritize Self-Care
Show yourself the same care and attention you would to a loved one. Self-care isn’t selfish, it’s necessary. Make sure you get sufficient sleep every night. Eat well. Exercise regularly. Take quiet time for yourself. Spend time in nature. All of these things are proven to support better mental health.
4 – Help Others and Embrace Gratitude
Helping other people without expecting anything in return is clinically proven to reduce the symptoms of depression. No matter who you are, there’s something you can do to help someone else. Fostering an attitude of gratitude is also a proven method for improving your mental health.
5 – Pursue a Passion
What’s the hobby or sport you’ve been daydreaming about for years? Everyone has one. Sailing, learning to play the guitar. Learning a new language. Practicing tai chi or yoga. Hiking the Appalachian Trail. Make a list of things like this. Choose one and commit to pursuing it in 2024!
6 – Set Mental Health Goals For Yourself
All of the ideas above are proven to be effective ways to improve your mental health and happiness. But, we need to set goals and have some accountability to achieve these things and to recognize success. Set attainable mental health goals for yourself in 2024 and keep track of them.
Mental Health Treatment in the Arizona Desert
If you or someone you love is looking for better mental health, Cottonwood Tucson can help.
Cottonwood Tucson is the premier mental health and depression treatment center in the desert Southwest. For over 25 years our mission has been to deliver the highest quality evidence-based treatment available for mental health disorders and substance misuse.
Our private residential treatment program is situated on 35 peaceful and serene acres in the Sonoran Desert foothills. You and your loved ones deserve the expert mental health treatment and innovative therapies that only Cottonwood offers. Let’s have a conversation about how we can help you achieve your mental health goals.
Call us anytime, 24 hours a day at (888) 433-1069.