According to the Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA), mental illness indirectly affects 100% of Canadians at some time through a family member, friend or colleague, and 20% of Canadians will personally experience a mental illness in their lifetime. These numbers are not restricted to a special group – it affects people of all ages, cultures, educational and income levels! In addition, the Mind Institute, in UK, found that those afflicted with mental illnesses are also more likely to develop other health problems such as coronary obesity or respiratory diseases.

When it feels cold, you wear heavier clothing; when you get a wound, you apply antibacterial ointments; when you break a bone, you go to the hospital to get it fixed. What about your mental health? We’ve selected some simple and practical tips for you to improve your well-being and take care of you mental health:

  1. Take care of your self-esteem

When we face problems in life, our self-esteem tends to diminish, putting us in a disadvantageous position to deal with the situations we have to face. Many of us become overly self-critical when we feel bad, further damaging our self-image when it is already down. To improve your mental health,  create the habit of considering your self-esteem as an “emotional immune system” that needs to be fed healthily when you are dealing with some psychological wounds – feed it with quality time, do something that makes you feel confident, happy and peaceful, on a more frequent basis.

  1. Be active

Did you know that a walk in the park is an activity that has been scientifically proved to lessen anxiety, depression and improve your mood? 90 minutes of walking, especially away from noisy urban areas, can reduce your negative thoughts in a very effective way. It’s not that hard! Put your body to work and organize your schedule to fit in some exercise.

  1. Make the best out of your time with others

Help a friend, visit your relatives, smile on the street,  or just say thank you. These positive attitudes stimulate reward areas in the brain and can provide a sense of purpose and self-esteem, as well as being able to help improve your existing relationships and create new ones.

  1. Meditate

The main goal of meditation is to make you more aware of yourself, your breath, your thoughts, your body, your feelings and everything that is related to them. This practice can significantly reduce stress and depression and also unable the process of positive change.

  1. Ask for help

The precise diagnosis of mental illness can only be made by a doctor, a psychiatrist or a psychotherapist. Do not rely only on your guts or other people’s guesses on what you should do about your unhappiness, your discomfort and your mental health – there’s no reason be ashamed to ask for help if you need it. Visit a psychologist in Montreal today and talk to a professional.