Tips from Eastern Wisdom for Maintaining Excellent Mental Health
Mental health topic is finally getting some good attention and awareness these days and, for the most part is not considered as a forbidden one for discussion. It's kind of a sad state that a lot of people irrespective of age, financial conditions, and social status struggle with metal health issues like depression and other serious conditions. While serious conditions might require help from a professional, protecting mental health is relatively easier than we might think by following few simple activities and habits. So my goal in this article is to take a stab at those tips for maintaining a good mental health (as per eastern wisdom and yogic culture).
As a disclaimer, I am not a medical professional and these are completely based on my experiences. Your mileage may vary with these tips and you should consult a doctor if you have any serious conditions.
This article is focused more towards tips for ensuring a good mental health just like how we brush our teeth or take a bath everyday to prevent problems. With that said, let's get into the details.
Tip #1 - Meditate
It's kind of universally accepted fact that meditation is an excellent mechanism for maintaining a healthy mind. It is an effective method to help calm your mind and achieve the focus you need from the constant daily distractions. When you practice focusing on that 'one thing' during meditation, you become more mindful over time and your mind slowly adapts at focusing on what is important by flushing out rest of the mental junk. If you are into reading, try this book Mindfulness in Plain English for a super simple explanation around this concept.
For beginners, practicing mindful meditation is a good place to start. Our resource around getting started with a simple mindful meditation can be found here.
Tip #2 - Physical exercise
One might think what does physical exercise has to do with mental health but per yogic culture, we generally have some energy allocated for both our physical and mental bodies. It is recommended that we do enough exercise on a daily basis to consume the allocated energy for our physical body. This is to ensure that our mind is not getting more than required energy (to kind of eliminate the risk of the monkey in our brains getting those steroids).
So make exercise part of your daily habit preferably in nature. It can be a long walk in the morning, spending good time involving physical activity in your garden, or yoga that can go along with your daily plan.
Tip #3 - Experiment other methods of meditation
If for some reason you are not convinced by our Tip #1, here is another shot at it. If sitting quietly in a room is not your thing, try other ways of practicing meditation. One mechanism that you can try is walking meditation and it's kind of hitting two birds with one stone as you also get your daily dose of exercise with this method. If you are into books, try this one where the walking meditation was explained very nicely: Art of Living by Thich Nhat Hanh
Tip #4 - Healthy diet
Our body and mind are more closely linked together than we realize. They are as close as chip and dale (wink). The healthier the body is the better our mind will be. So it is very important that we make the habit of eating healthy a priority to be able to maintain good mental health. We are not suggesting to follow one diet vs other (like keto or vegan etc.) but as a general rule cutting down on junk is a good way to start. Couple of other tips around this are - intermittent fasting and detox days.
On a side note: Just like how we detox our bodies, we also need to detox our minds once in a while. A good article on mind detox can be found here.
Tip #5 - And finally, Meditate
If you skipped our earlier tips around meditation, here we are chasing you again like a ghost with this tip. We can't emphasize enough how important it is to meditate for maintaining a good mental health. Meditation is an excellent tool when practiced consistently for a long period can change how you see and react to situations. We don't generally have control over lot of things in our lives but we definitely have control over how we react to those situations and meditation helps us in that latter part.
If the earlier suggested books were too spiritual or religious to you, thy this book which is more on the scientific side and explains benefits of meditation: Breaking the Habit of Being Yourself
Ultimately each of us are different and what works for one person might not work for other. So if you are any other ideas to help the our readers, let us know in the comments section below.
That's all from my and hope this was helpful to you. Peace !!!