Here we are 1/2 way through the month of May and I'm just writing about Mental Health Month. I have received tons of emails and read just as many articles, blogs, tweets and post entitled May Is Mental Health Month and no where have I seen anything about a mental health check up. When its breast cancer awarenes month I get texts and emails-have you scheduled your mammogram? heart health month-have you had your cholesteral check? men's health month? had your testosterone checked? For whatever reason I haven't gotten a text or an email asking me-HAVE YOU HAD YOUR MENTAL HEALTH CHECK UP?
Many people put mental health off because they think things will get better all by themselves but the truth is things usually get worse. Early intervention actually leads to quicker recovery. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. In fact, without one you really don't have the other. It is said that there are 4 pillars of mental health: cognitive health, emotional health, social health, and physical health.
Cognitive health — the ability to clearly think, learn, and remember — is an important component of performing everyday activities.
Emotional health, at its core, refers to our personal thoughts, feelings, and emotions.
Social health can be defined as our ability to interact and form meaningful relationships with others.
Physical health is defined as the condition of your body, taking into consideration everything from the absence of disease to fitness level.
When these pillars are balanced you are at your healthiest. Achieving this isn't terribly difficult-read a book, smile at someone, engage with friends and family, take a short walk. Establish a relationship with a therapist!
An inbalance can show upin different way and in different environments. Signs that a mental health check up should be scheduled follow:
- Struggling to work, parent or keep up at home
- Unable to handle stress with normal coping strategies
- Difficulty maintaining a healthy appetite or experiencing significant weight loss
- Using drugs or alcohol to cope
- Engaging in risk-taking behaviors
- Unable to focus
- Lack of interest in activities that once brought enjoyment
- Panic attacks
- Fear of being around others, even children or family
- Mistrust of people they normally confided in or counted on
- A sense of guilt and unworthiness
- Restlessness or agitation
- Anger and violent outbursts
If you answered YES to any of the above it is in the best interest of your holistic health to SCHEDULE YOUR MENTAL HEALTH CHECK UP! Being proactive will lead to a longer, happy, more productive, motivated, stimulating life.
Give a therapist a call. It's not as scary as you might think. It's two people in a room (or on computers) having a conversation. A good therapist will travel with you on your journey to maximum mental wellness-you lead the way!