or emotional health issues can affect anyone.
Mental health promotion looks at how individual people, families,
organisations and communities both think and feel.
During our everyday lives and especially at
difficult times, we need to build and strengthen our mental health
reserves or resilience and cultivate a positive outlook. It is also
important to recognise that our mental health is as important as our
One way of doing this is by
looking after yourself,
improving mental wellbeing, and build confidence. This will help
enable you to cope with life’s day to day challenges. It is also
important to improve your physical health.
One way to look after yourself is to learn to
relax more. Taking part in
physical activity is another way in which we can raise mood, improve
depression and is an interest that can be enjoyed by individuals but
also by families, e.g. cycling or swimming.
When and why is stress Harmful?
is something we all encounter. Life changes, such as moving house,
getting married or coping with bereavement, can all cause it. However,
stress also has a positive side. A certain level of stress may be
necessary and enjoyable in order to spark us into action. (Modified
from Mind Information 2008.)
Early recognition of the signs of stress, anxiety
and depression is the crucial first step in dealing with problems and
preventing them becoming more serious. One of the key things to do is
to seek help as soon as possible, either via your GP or if in the
workplace, staff support services where available or self care through
NHS choices – mental health,
See below Ten tips to tackle stress:
Make the connection. Could the fact that
you’re feeling under-the-weather be a response to pressure?
Take a regular break. Give yourself a brief
break whenever you feel things are getting on top of you – get a
soft drink or take a brief stroll.
Learn to relax.
Get better organised. Make a list of jobs:
tackle one task at a time: alternate dull tasks with interesting
Sort out your worries. Divide them into those that you can do
something about (either now or soon) and those that you can’t.
Those that you can’t change, there’s no point in worrying about.
Change what you can. Look at the problems that can be sorted
and get whatever help is necessary to sort it out. Learn to say
Look at your long-term priorities. Step back
and examine what it is about your life that’s giving you too much
stress. What can you off-load, or change? How can you introduce a
better balance between work, social life and home life? Is it time
to reassess your priorities?
Improve your lifestyle. Find time to eat
properly, get plenty of exercise and
enough sleep. Avoid drinking and smoking too much. However
much you believe they can help you to relax, they’ll have the
Confide in someone. Don’t keep emotions
Focus on the positive aspects of your life.
(Mind trouble-shooters fact file on stress
Please see the
Mental Health Promotion – Stress factsheet for further information