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Mental health impacts how you think and feel, affecting all aspects of your life. It also determines how you handle your stress and make important choices. Having good mental health is important for all ages, from children to elders. Here are the most effective ways to boost your mental health.

Stay Positive

Staying positive may be easy when you're happy, but it gets more difficult as you encounter stress. Staying positive is something you'll have to learn how to do, but it gets easier with time. Ultimately, it's up to you to see the silver lining when something stressful happens. For example, if you lose your job, you might consider it an opportunity to find a career you enjoy.

Staying positive is all about balancing positive and negative emotions, but it doesn't mean you won't ever feel down. It's important to feel your emotions so you can address them and move past them. However, how you manage those emotions once you feel them depends on you.

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Practice Gratitude

Practicing gratitude allows you to actively acknowledge the good things in your life. Practicing gratitude might look different for everyone, but it's typically easiest to keep a gratitude journal that you write in every day. Your journal can be a list of everything you're grateful for, including your family, friends, pet, and even coffee. Don't worry about repeating things in your journal; it's important you continuously recognize the things that make you happy.

Practicing gratitude allows you to see your life in a different light. When you take the time to sit down and think about things that make you happy, you can focus on the positive instead of the negative.

Get into the habit of practicing gratitude by writing in a journal for at least five minutes a day. In addition, writing in your journal at night can help you relieve stress so you can easily fall asleep. t your job, so you must do something you love or have a passion for—being at a job you despise can make you feel like you're wasting your life, which can make you feel depressed. Additionally, having a stressful job can impact your mental and physical health.

If you find yourself feeling drained just at the thought of going to work, consider why your job situation makes you feel down. You might find that you enjoy your job but have a toxic workplace. No matter the case, it's up to you to get out of any job situation that makes you feel stressed or burned out.

Set Goals

Setting goals gives you something to work towards. Then, when you accomplish those goals, you'll feel a sense of purpose that's unbeatable. Setting goals gives you a reason to get up in the morning and stay productive and active all day long. Your goals can be career-based, health-based, or even home-based. For example, you can have a goal for weight loss while also having one to get a promotion by the end of the year.

Whatever your goals are, make sure you also set an action plan that helps you accomplish those goals. You may even have to break your goals up into smaller goals so you can keep accomplishing small tasks until you reach the ultimate goal.

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Spend Time With Others

Even if you're an introvert, spending time with others can boost your mental health because it allows you to take your mind off of other things going on. Not only that but your friends and family are your support network, so you'll always have someone to talk to when you're feeling stressed.

Don't Forget About Your Physical Health

Taking care of your physical health can improve your mental health. Your body and mind are connected; the other will be impacted when one doesn't feel well. You can focus on your physical health by:

  • Being active
  • Getting quality sleep
  • Eating well

Find a Purpose

Giving yourself a purpose in life will allow you to wake up feeling energized. Not to mention, it allows you to find something you're passionate about so you can feel connected to the world and yourself. Your purpose in life won't be the same as someone else's. For example, your purpose in life might be your pets or children, while someone else's will be their passion for their hobbies or career.

If you don't know what your purpose is yet, spend time thinking about the things you enjoy. Many people find careers they're excited about while others wake up so they can enjoy their hobbies. It doesn't matter what your purpose is; just make sure it gives you a reason to wake up every day and helps you manage daily stresses.

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Take Care of Others

Focusing on others allows you to get out of your head. Whether you volunteer at the local pet shelter or take care of your grandmother, you'll have something to do that makes you feel connected. Not only that, but you'll be able to keep a schedule of helping others that not only makes you feel good but helps others.

Reconsider Your Job

You spend eight or more hours a day at work. If you notice that you've been feeling anxious or depressed for a while, it might be time to seek help from a psychologist or an in person or telepsychiatrist. These professionals can help you learn how to cope with stress while providing you with medication to improve potential chemical imbalances. Seeing a professional is not something to be ashamed about; it's something you should be proud of. Getting the help you need can improve your life and make you feel happier.

Boosting Your Mental Health

There are many ways to boost your mental health. It's up to you to find the ways that work best based on your schedule and needs. For example, while getting a puppy can give you a sense of purpose, it's not a good idea if you're never home. Finding ways to improve your mental health might take experimentation, but you can find something that truly works for you with a little patience.

About the Author

Marné Amoguis holds a B.A. in International Business from UC San Diego. She is a contributing writer at 365businesstips.com where she loves sharing her passion for digital marketing. Outside of writing, she loves traveling, playing music, and hiking.

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The 2020s been bending us over for a couple years now – time to switch positions.

What’s our motto for the new year? No-effiing-more. Starting now. Here’s what we’re not gon’ do in 2022.

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The beginning of the year always seems to bring up sentiments of retrospection and resolution. These types of feelings can range anywhere from accomplishment and pride to regret or remorse. In either case, the feelings we choose to attach to as we review our past 12 months can impact how we will approach the New Year ahead of us.Similarly, once a book has been read, you know it’s time to close the cover and move onto the next story. You’ll forever have the images, emotions and knowledge that you absorbed with you, but until you know it’s time to place that book back on the shelf and move on to the next, you’ll never be able to experience continued growth and expansion of mind, body and spirit as they relate to the characters and topics within those pages.

As you move into your New Year, and look back over the past, you may find yourself in places of judgment, frustration and disappointment along with joy, laughter and a sense of accomplishment.

The important thing is that you allow all those experiences, which have become a part of you, to help you see the upcoming adventure as a positive and exciting opportunity.

This next era of your life has as much promise for discovery, fulfillment and excitement as the opening of a new book as you read it for the very first time. Imagine the possibilities, especially if you have no idea what the New Year is going to mean to you.

Here are some areas of your life that you may want to consider closing the book on in 2016:

  • Unhealthy relationships
  • Unfulfilling lifestyle
  • Only working biceps and chest
  • Sugar and fruit juice
  • Leggings
  • Giving too many f*cks
  • Fear
  • Not being involved with a helping community organization
  • Knowing when it’s time to leave the party

How do you close the book? Ask yourself these questions:

  • Have I read this book before?
  • Is this story keeping me from reading a new book?
  • Would I be a different character in another story?
  • Am I finished with this story?

If you can answer in the affirmative for all or most of these queries, then it’s time to close the book. “But, how do I …” CLOSE IT! “But, what if …” JUST CLOSE IT!

Don’t forget, not all things that need to be released in order to move forward are bad. Not bad at all! Sometimes a good thing has just run its course and it’s time to appreciate that time and move forward to the next good thing!

The past four years, being a part of the Echo family has provided me with experiences and opportunities I didn’t expect to receive. I have met some of the most inspiring people in our community (whose names may not even be recognized by the majority), I’ve received several illicit phone calls and voice messages from slightly frightening “fans” and I’ve been challenged to continuously educate and re-educate myself in the fields of physical fitness and life coaching. And, much like the ending of another year or the conclusion of a rewarding book, it’s time for me to close this chapter and move forward to the exciting adventures ahead of me.

As I continue with my life coaching practice, and personal training, I have had to learn to take my own advice and make the challenging decisions – and sometimes scary choices – that come with knowing when a book is finished, even when I’m not sure I want the story to end.

So I end this year and move into the next, with so much love and gratitude toward Echo Magazine, its publisher and editor as well as the powerfully supportive LGBTQ community of Arizona. Thank you for allowing me to use my personality and style to speak to for so long, on so many topics. We’ll see each other around town, and you’ll hear from me still …whether you like it or not!

Make 2022, your best year EVER!

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I have clients who tell me that it’s painful for them to walk down the street and see all those happy LGBT (or straight) couples.

“It makes me feel so lonely and unwanted,” they say. When you’re single, and people around you “appear” (and I use that word deliberately) to be much happier than you - so in love, arm-in-arm with their gorgeous partner - it’s tough not to compare your lonesome, solitary self and feel you’re lacking.

Feeling alone and unloved is common to us all, coupled or not. If you live the Hallmark card life - you have a wonderful, perfect partner and the two of you regularly enjoy sunsets on the beach and great sex by the fireplace, followed by hours of hugging and kissing – then this column is not for you.

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