Mental health is defined as the psychological fitness and satisfactory organization to culture & society and the normal demands of everyday life.
A mentally healthy person can function successfully in life regardless of whether they are a part of the affluent society or going through challenging and tough times.
Some people believe that mental health problems are only faced by people who are in the bottom tier of society, feeling stuck in life. Contrary to popular belief, mental health problems face people from all walks of life, including aristocrats and high society.
Living in the modern world today has exposed humankind to extreme pressure and extraordinary challenges daily. With deceit and hypocrisy on the rise, the contemporary world provides few outlets of honest expression.
Identify Mental Health Warning Signs
Unsure if you’re suffering from mental health issues? This is the first step which anybody can take to ascertain the state of one’s mental health.
People who have suffered a head injury or a major accident in their life are more prone to exhibiting these symptoms. A person who has a physical deformity of any kind is also more susceptible to displaying these indications.
- Fear, apprehension or anxiety
- Sudden mood changes
- Difficulty focusing on or talking about specific topics
- Acting ruthlessly, aggressively or precariously
- Excessive smoking, drinking or use of other drugs
- Making insignificant and inconsequential things unnecessarily important
- Episodes of short-term memory loss
- Inability to fall asleep at night
- Sleeping too much
- Inability to make simple decisions
- Failure to justify actions
- Constant negativity
- Undue sensitivity
- Unpredictable, purposeless or baseless anger
- Avoiding crowds
- Excessive weight gain or loss
- Lack of self-confidence
This is not a comprehensive list of indications for a person with mental health problems. Each person as unique. Therefore, their physical manifestation of the mental health problem is also unique.
In fact, an individual may be so consumed by the mental health issue that they do not realize they are exhibiting these symptoms. In such situations, a friend, family member or colleague may be crucial to help use these tricks for reading body language to verify that there could be an underlying problem.
Mental Health Advantages of Expressive Writing
“Writing about an emotionally charged subject or an unresolved trauma helps you put the event into perspective and give some structure and organization to those anxious feelings, which ultimately helps you get through it,” asserts James Pennebaker, a professor of psychology at The University of Texas, Austin, and author of the book Opening Up by Writing it Down: How Expressive Writing Improves Health and Eases Emotional Pain.
“This can help people sleep better, feel and think better, and have richer social lives. All of which can bolster immune function and improve health.”
How to Implement Expressive Writing Techniques
Find a comfortable spot at home or in your favorite park where you can be alone without any interruptions. Begin writing about your deepest thoughts, worries, feelings, and apprehensions. Don’t worry about spelling, grammar, structure or punctuation.
“It can be related to something you’re dreaming, thinking or worrying about a lot, an issue or memory that’s affecting your life in an unhealthy way, or a subject you’ve been avoiding for days, weeks or years,” says Professor Pennebaker.
Make it a point to write nonstop for at least 15 minutes daily, for at least 4 consecutive days a week.
“I like to go to the beach just before sunrise without my cellphone so that nobody can bother me when I write,” proclaims Sarah Pinder from crowdwriter. She claims the sunrise gives her food for thought to keep writing and helps her achieve clarity by the end of each session.
Expressive writing is an excellent method to overcome symptoms of mild depression.
Physical Rewards of Expressive Writing
Expressive writing benefits aren’t limited to reducing mental health problems and relieving stress. In fact, recent studies suggest that expressive writing may also lend multiple physical benefits.
Fifty physically fit adults between the ages of 64 and 97 were a part of an expressive writing research experiment in New Zealand at the University of Auckland. Twenty people from the group took part in the expressive writing exercise for 2 weeks for at least 17 minutes daily.
The entire group of adults was subject to tiny lacerations on their upper arms. After 13 days, more than 80% of the expressive writing group’s wounds were almost fully recuperated. The group who did not take part in the expressive writing activity made little or no progress in healing their wounds.