The World Health Organisation recognises World Mental Health Day on 10 October every year. The theme of 2022's World Mental Health Day, set by the World Federation for Mental Health, is 'Make mental health and wellbeing for all a global priority'. World Mental Health Day is also a chance to talk about mental health in general, how we need to look after it, and how important it is to talk about things and get help if you are struggling.
Evidence from health organisations such as the NHS suggests there are 4 key steps you can take right now to improve your mental health and wellbeing. Trying these things could help you feel more positive and able to get the most out of life.
Connect with people
Good relationships are important for your mental wellbeing. They can:
help you to build a sense of belonging and self-worth
give you an opportunity to share positive experiences
provide emotional support and allow you to support others
There are lots of things you could try to help build stronger and closer relationships:
if possible, take time each day to be with your family, for example, try arranging a fixed time to eat dinner together
arrange a day out with friends you have not seen for a while
try switching off the TV to talk or play a game with your children, friends or family
have lunch with a colleague
visit a friend or family member who needs support or company
make the most of technology to stay in touch with friends and family. Video-chat apps like Skype and FaceTime are useful, especially if you live far apart
2. Be physically active
Being active is not only great for your physical health and fitness. Evidence also shows it can also improve your mental wellbeing by:
raising your self-esteem
helping you to set goals or challenges and achieve them
causing chemical changes in your brain which can help to positively change your mood
3. Learn new skills
Research shows that learning new skills can also improve your mental wellbeing by:
boosting self-confidence and raising self-esteem
helping you to build a sense of purpose
helping you to connect with others
Some of the things you could try include:
try learning to cook something new.
try taking on a new responsibility at work, such as mentoring a junior staff member or improving your presentation skills
work on a DIY project
consider signing up for a course at a local college.
try new hobbies that challenge you, such as writing a blog, taking up a new sport or learning to paint
4. Live in the present
Paying more attention to the present moment can improve your mental wellbeing. This includes your thoughts and feelings, your body and the world around you.
Some people call this awareness "mindfulness". Mindfulness can help you enjoy life more and understand yourself better. It can positively change the way you feel about life and how you approach challenges.