How to maintain your mental health: Become more proactive than reactive
Updated: Oct 15, 2019
By Simon Garcia (Dip. Psych.) www.gps-therapy.com
How many of you invest the same time and resources into maintaining your mental health wellbeing as you do with your physical health?
Many of you might visit a gym or take other steps regarding your physical wellbeing such as a routine check up at the dentist? These are both proactive steps many of us take to avoid or reduce the chances of impaired physical health in the future.
We even act proactively when we book our motor vehicles for a service after a certain number of miles to check that it’s running ok. Regarding your mental health, how many you take the same proactive steps to ensure that all is running ok “under your hood”?
With physical wear and tear the signs are often easier to identify. A set of scales and the BMI can help inform you if you are overweight or obese. A stiff back or a tooth ache are also clear signs identifying issues with your physical health.
The signs of impaired mental health are often less transparent. Low energy, problems sleeping, withdrawal from friends, excessive fears or feeling sad are all signs of symptoms associated with poor mental health.
Whilst efforts to raise awareness about mental health is rising, how many of us take the same proactive steps as we do with our cars and physical wellbeing for our mental health? From my own personal experience from within the workplace and practise as a psychotherapist, sadly many only seek professional help when their life has been negatively impacted by mental illness.
A more proactive rather than reactive approach is required. Like we would proactively book sessions with a personal trainer to maintain our physical wellbeing, why not do the same with your mental health and book a session with a professional in this area? They should be able to identify any mental health issues and if there are none, then advise you on steps to maintain your mental fitness and stay fit and well.
When mental illness bites it can feel a very dark and lonely place. This proactive approach to your mental health can help you climb the ladder of life to reach your potential in the light, rather than being lost in the dark.
Friends and family can be a great support. There are however times when friends or family are part of the problem, or totally entangled in it, and though they may wish to help, they won’t be able to offer the space, objectivity, confidentiality or skills a mental health professional can to get to the heart of an entrenched issue.
Also, modern talk therapies are not always about problems. Some of the most innovative and satisfying use of them results in enhancing life, rather than fixing it.
Having originally come from the world financial markets I often got asked “what’s a good investment?”
Having now practised for many years as a psychotherapist and coach the answer is in close reach.
Invest in yourself and discover how to not only how to fulfil your potential, but also how to be healthier and happy.