We’ve all been there: Exhausted, lacking motivation, on edge, or simply not feeling like working at all. And we might have even used up all of our sick days, not to rest from a cold or injury, but just to get a bit of relief from those job or business responsibilities. Sometimes, you're not able to shake that nagging feeling of gloom, eventually finding yourself in a toxic pattern of unhealthy habits and behaviors. There's a larger issue that goes way beyond just needing a break.
Taking care of your mental health is definitely essential for overall wellness, but if you needed even more of a push to put a focus on the mind and spirit, just check this out: Recent research has found that 46% of people with “problem debt” also have a mental health issue, and 86% have indicated that their financial situation “made their mental health problems worse.” That means that while your mental health isn’t all about the money, neglecting it can certainly impact your finances or ability to earn a living.
There are often reports about what mental health neglect costs employers, and while we all can appreciate our jobs, now’s the time to hone in on the person in the mirror, the priceless human being who exists even beyond a role or office and who has to be able to thrive and flourish. Just like you would invest in preventative care for your body, it’s also a good idea, at least financially, to invest in quality mental wellness care.
The Cost of Poor Mental Health
Poor mental health, according to the CDC, has been found to negatively affect one’s job performance, engagement at work, communication abilities, and daily functioning habits. And when you’re not quite operating at your best, there are higher chances of not only making costly mistakes but losing your source of income altogether. There’s an actual cost to mental health distress as well, including spending $3,000 more in health-care services per year, so neglecting to address any issues can literally mean more money going out of your pocket than coming in.
No matter if you’re feeling the effects of burnout or depression or you’re feeling super-happy and upbeat, maintaining deliberate habits related to nurturing your mental health is important. This can look like taking time to decompress and strengthening your mind and spirit through prayer, as well as addressing any symptoms of mental distress or disorders via a visit to a licensed mental health professional. And it doesn’t matter if you need to go once a quarter or once a week or if medication and other therapies are part of your journey or not.
Normalizing incorporating mental health activities and appointments into your overall wellness routine is the move.
How to Maintain Mental Health Wellness
As much as we all want to hustle and make more money, neglecting an important aspect of your well-being can ensure you won’t be able to fully enjoy the fruits of your labor and protect an important priceless asset: yourself.
If you find yourself slacking in the mental health maintenance department, experts recommend taking the following steps:
1. Be sure to honor and uplift yourself.Giphy
Stopping habits like negative self-talk in its tracks and doing things that make you feel good on the inside can do amazing things for your mental health. Tap into what helps boost your confidence and participate in activities that do so. Affirmations have also been known to help boost your mood and support motivation, so recite them to yourself or keep them visible around the house.
2. Remember the connection between body and mind, and get active.Giphy
Exercise has always been something that has been found to have positive effects on your mental health. Experts have also said time and time again that balanced nutrition habits positively contribute to overall health including mental wellness.
3. Take an accounting of your network and surround yourself with great people.tracee ellis ross squad GIFGiphy
Having great interactions with family and friends and being surrounded by positive influences have been seen to positively benefit one’s mental health.
4. Set boundaries and seek balance.Family Vacation Fox GIF by GrandfatheredGiphy
If you find yourself offering too much to one aspect of your life and it’s causing you mental distress or agony, it’s time to reassess and set a few boundaries. Experts have also touted the benefits of doing so including avoiding burnout and building “greater self-esteem.”
5. Don't underestimate the power of coaching and/or therapy.Therapy GIF by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy FallonGiphy
Wellness experts often recommend scheduling time to talk to someone, even if there’s nothing “wrong,” per se. Taking charge of nurturing your mental wellness starts with you, and there’s nothing “wrong” with seeking advice or guidance related to your overall mental well-being.
Certified coaches and licensed therapists can guide you toward strategies for sustainable habit adjustments, processing through trauma, addressing addictions, diagnosing disorders, coping with stress triggers like breakups, debt, or lack of job satisfaction, or maintaining overall mental wellness.
If your mental health issues are found to be clinical, you’re not alone. A professional can help you with treatment plans for anxiety disorder, clinical depression, PTSD, or other clinically recognized mental health conditions, and you’d need to be able to manage with the help of a professional and any other resources necessary. Mental wellness must be approached and handled with the same responsible awareness, love, compassion, and deliberate action as your physical wellness.
Taking care of your mental health really boils down to giving yourself the space and permission to seek the help and resources you might need to achieve the life you want and continue reaching your financial goals, one step at a time.
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