Mon | Dec 11, 2017

How to take care of your mental health

Published:Sunday | November 13, 2016 | 12:00 AM

No matter who we are, we are bound to have tribulation in this life. It is unavoidable.

According to counselling psychologist AndrÈ Allen-Casey, facing problems is not the issue, it is how we react to it - that is where stress is born. The trials we face in this world will either break us or make us strong.

Analyse your issues, figure out what can be done, and then take some immediate action.

Learn to accept what you cannot change. Learn what is and what is not controllable in your life.

Since life does not come with terms and conditions, it therefore necessitates the need for you to adjust in order to maintain and strengthen your mental and emotional health. It's important to pay attention to your own needs and feelings. Don't let stress and negative emotions build up. Try to maintain a balance between your daily responsibilities and the things you enjoy. If you take care of yourself, you'll be better prepared to deal with challenges when they arise.

People who are mentally and emotionally healthy have:

- A sense of contentment.

- A zest for living and the ability to laugh and have fun.

- The ability to deal with stress and bounce back from adversity.

- A sense of meaning and purpose, in both their activities and their relationships.

- Possess the flexibility to learn new things and adapt to change.

- An understanding of the balance between work and play, rest and activity.

- The ability to build and maintain fulfilling relationships.

- Self-confidence and high self-esteem.

 

What are some steps to healing?

 

- Begin to allow yourself to make relationships in which it is OK to share emotions at a deep level.

- Become aware of your resistance to intimacy and allow yourself to feel the need for closeness.

- Pray on a personal rather than a grocery-list level.

- Begin to forgive with the plan to forget. The healing power of forgiveness can help to identify your mental status. It speaks to whether or not you are compassionate or competitive; controlling or compromising; concerned or condescending.

- Give yourself a present by living in the present. Stop ruminating on past failures and pain. It will distress your today and dampen your hope for tomorrow.

- Allow yourself and others to make mistakes.

- Prepare to do the right thing inspite of and not because of.

- Take responsibility for what you do. The person or the situation did not put it in but it definitely pulled it out.

- Never forget that a person's opinion does not identify who you are.

- REST:

- Rest sufficiently

- Eat properly

- Support others, and

- Take time to reward yourself for your accomplishments for each day.

• Submitted by Andre Allen-Casey, counselling psychologist. Email andreallen_casey@yahoo.com.