9 Achievable Mental Health Goals

Mental Health Goals, Mental Health Disorders, And How To Set Mental Health Goals For The New Year

Mental health entails all that has to do with our psychological, and social well-being and is not limited to just our emotional health. Mental health consequently affects one’s reasoning pattern, feelings as well as actions, the way stresses are being handled, and the choice of things.

Interesting to say good mental health is not limited to just an adult or the elderly. Mental health started in childhood and spans through to old age (1).

In this article, we will discuss what should be the specific mental health goals to set for any age group. Also, how mental health is important, can mental health affect physical health, and how mental health yoga can help mental and emotional wellbeing.

There is stigma surrounding mental health in our society. Despite one’s mental health status, one should set long-term mental health goals for optimum well-being. Also, make sure your goals for mental health are smart goals and realistic goals to help you reach your maximum productivity and happiness.

Make short-term goals, such as stress management and also set a long-term goal, such as manage negative thought to live a happier life. A person’s mental health is just as important as their physical health. People with good mental health goals also help improve their physical health for a balanced body and mind connection. Taking care of your body, get enough sleep, and a strong support system are healthy ways to help you achieve the goal of a long and healthy life.

What Is Mental Health And Wellness, How To Reach Your Mental Health Goals?

The world health organization, WHO defines mental health as a specific state of well-being mental, that aids an individual in coping and adjusting to the stresses life throws at him or her, being open to learning new things, working and taking part in communal activities, and contributing to the growth of their society.

Mental health is a very vital component of one’s well-being that affects our personal and collective decision-making process, affects the kinds of relationships we build with people, and the way we view the world at large.

It is safe to say good mental health passes for a civic human right of every individual, and it is very important in every personal, and economic development.

Mental health goals are beyond just the absence of mental illnesses, it is a continuum with different testimonial experiences in people and different challenges and outcomes for different individuals (2).

To further buttress how important mental health is, the world health organization has annually set aside the 10th of October as world mental health day every year (11).

However, the date when mental health awareness week will take place has been concluded to be Monday 15th to Sunday 21st of May, 2023. During this period, there will be public enlightenment on the importance of mental health and how to improve one’s mental health (12).

Mental Health Vs Emotional Health

A lot of people mistake emotional health to mean the same thing as mental health, however, these are two different things although they may coexist together with very similar features, they are also unique programs on their own with specific definitions.

Recognizing the differences between emotional and mental health will not only help in diagnosis, but it will also help in the management of each patient or client and help a general practitioner when referring patients to the right clinic or rehabilitation centers.

What then is emotional health definition? Emotional health can be defined as the ability of an individual to cope, adjust and manage different emotions. Emotional health has also been defined as the ability of an individual to relate well with people and be able to maintain a good and positive interpersonal relationships with people.

Mental health on the other hand has to do with the ability to cope with all kinds of stressors and be able to manage one’s emotions effectively. Mental health also influences one’s decision-making process (3).

What Are The Similarities Between The Emotional Health Definition And Mental Health?

Emotional health and mental are unique and different entities, but just as in medicine, one discipline can always exist or coexist with another.

Emotional health and mental health are also very similar and intertwined. If mental health is not stable and fine, emotional health will always be in shambles and wild. To enjoy good emotional intelligence and management, one must be in the right state of health mentally.

In the rehabilitation of patients with mental disorders, for example, the activities always take into consideration and focus on both emotional health and mental health (3).

Mental Health Vs Well Being

To perfectly explain what mental health or mental well-being is, the differences between the two entities will be explained with mental illness.

Like there is physical health, our mental health also exists and the relationship between both helps us to stay positive, and happy, helps to stay healthy, and reduces the risk of infections or diseases.

Mental well-being is similar to mental health and several schools of thought have argued that there are no existing differences between the two entities. While mental health exists generally in everyone regardless of whether good or bad, mental well-being takes a different turn in everyone and is usually dictated by the mental and physical health of individuals.

An individual having poor night sleep, loss of appetite, anorexia, low mood, and other clinical symptoms, is at that point described to have low or poor mental well-being, and not necessarily that they are suffering from a mental illness or have a mental disorder already (4).

When so many people address well-being, most are referring to general well-being and the state of the mind on a daily, as well as the things and activities that take place daily, such as office stress, staff burnout, and others. These are the things commonly referred to in mental well-being and not mental disorders.

However, certain factors can affect the mental health and well-being of individuals, some of such factors are:

  • Relationships: A healthy relationship will have a positive effect on the mental health and mental well-being of an individual
  • Careers: A good workplace, minimal stress at work, and good interpersonal relationships with coworkers will aid good mental well-being and health
  • Nutrition: Eating healthy and eating good foods is another good stimulant for the mind, it helps to stay healthy.
  • Exercises: mental health yoga and other exercises are highly recommended for individuals that want good mental health and well-being.
  • Others are good sleep, building good self-esteem, and good work-life balance (5).

Can Mental Health Affect Physical Health?

There is a strong connection between our mental health and physical health. There are several relationships between the onset of chronic medical conditions, their manifestations, and the mental health of a person, and how this unavoidably affects the quality of life, pressure on the health system, and its overall impact on society or community.

There is no better place to explain how possible can mental health affect physical health other than in patients dealing with chronic medical conditions

Chronic medical conditions can present as a result of bad mental health. Studies have explained mental health patients whose conditions do not improve or with advanced mental disorders are at risk of chronic physical conditions. Interestingly, patients with chronic medical or physical conditions are high-risk patients with poor mental health (6).

What Are The Effects Of Poor Mental Health On Physical Health:

The following are some of the highlighted effects of mental health on overall physical health:

Chronic diseases

Several chronic diseases have been linked to the onset of depression and anxiety in patients. For example, a lot of patients with diabetes mellitus, cancer, and hypertension, are increasingly being referred to a psychiatrist or mental health expert because of the manifestations of mental disorders in them.

Another study explained that a lot of patients with schizophrenia, both on treatment or not end up developing chronic physical conditions such as heart diseases, with higher mortality rates.

Poor sleep

A lot of patients with mental disorders have sleep problems such as insomnia. Individuals with depression, for example, may find it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep at night which in the end has a worse prognosis on the overall health of the client. Conditions like anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and bipolar disorders will affect the sleep patterns of the patients, which may result in insomnia.

Poor health seeking behavior

Individuals with mental disorders are at risk of inadequate access to quality healthcare services. This is because there is a mental disorder that in the first place may be affecting their reasoning and inability to decide when to access the health facility.

It is also difficult for people who suffer from mental disorders to take good care of their physical health. This is because of the self-neglect that comes with some of these medical conditions such as seen in schizophrenia and depression.

Hence, one of the mental health goals of a psychiatrist is to ensure the patients or clients have access to health care as soon as possible after the detection of any clinical symptoms (7).

Mental Health Disorders

Mental health disorders are characterized by clinically evident imbalances in an individual’s behavioral, social, and cognitive activities/actions. There is usually an associated impairment or loss of function in the patient’s usual contributing areas.

There are quite several mental health conditions, from mild disorders to severe or malignant diseases. The following are some of the mental health disorders:

Anxiety disorder

Anxiety disorder is one of the commonest mental health disorders. It is characterized by the exhibition of severe fear about certain places, objects, or even situations. There are different types of the anxiety disorders such as generalized anxiety disorder, panic attack, and separation anxiety disorder.

Depression

The world health organization 2019, stated in research that 280 million people live with depression, and of this population, 9.2% of them are adolescents and children. Depression is a lot different from having mood swings or being unhappy.

In depression, the person has a low mood, accompanied by a feeling of being empty, hopeless, helpless, and worthless, there is a decline in involvement in their normal daily activities, and each episode can go on from days to weeks.

PTSD

PTSD stands for post-traumatic stress disorder, and it usually occurs after an unpleasant traumatic or stressful situation. Such events are usually life-threatening, which causes the person to be very scared.

The other types or examples of mental health disorders commonly seen are:

  • OCD, obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Bipolar disorder
  • Schizophrenia
  • Phobias
  • Eating disorders
  • Sleeping disorders
  • Neurodevelopmental disorders (9,10)

Reasons Why Mental Health Is Important

Mental health goals go beyond just the absence of mental disorder in person, it also has a lot to do with the overall well-being of a person both physically and psychologically. Hence, it is important to discuss how mental health is important because our mental health affects our everyday activities and decisions.

The following are some of the reasons explaining how mental health is important:

  • Poor mental health makes one vulnerable to poor physical conditions such as diabetes, arthritis, and cardiovascular diseases.
  • Taking good care of mental health will prevent the onset or development of mental disorders.
  • Good mental health gives the strength to be able to cope daily with the hurdles and challenges of life.
  • With good mental health, we get more creative, and we can explore new and better things in life.
  • Good mental health promotes a better life.
  • Being in the right state of mind helps to build a cordial and healthy relationships with the people around us.
  • Good mental health enhances and promotes productivity and the ability to maximize one’s potential
  • With good mental health, we can contribute meaningfully to our family and the community at large.
  • Positive self-esteem is built and sustained with the help of a good mindset and mental health (8)

Achieve Your 9 Mental Health Goals

Below are examples and inspiring mental health goals everyone should aim at:

  1. Develop consistent morning and daily routines
  2. Daily gratitude
  3. Seek therapy and healing
  4. Set healthy boundaries
  5. Practice self-care
  6. Meditation
  7. Good sleep
  8. Healthy relationships
  9. Positive affirmations (18)

Goal Setting For Mental Health With Self-Care

Not sure where and how to start improving your mental health and set goals for the 9 mental goals listed in the above section? Below are vital steps and measurable actions that will help improve your mental health with self-compassion:

Get more sleep

Sleep is not just to improve physical health. Getting more sleep and rest also helps to improve the functions of mental health. Studies have revealed that individuals who sleep for less than 6 hours a day record more mental distress and disorders compared to those who enjoy adequate sleep of 7 to 9 hours daily.

Good relationships

To build good mental health, it is important to strengthen one’s relationships. It is good to surround oneself with healthy relationships. Even with busy schedules, it is important and achievable to build strong healthy friendships that will help build good mental health.

There are plenty of ways to nurture good friendships and relationships. Keep in touch with friends regularly, call or chat during breaks, and plan and go on vacations together to unwind from work stress.

Physical exercises

One of the best ways to achieve one’s mental health goals is to exercise regularly. Exercise does quite several benefits to mental health, such as relieving stress, elevating moods, promoting healthy sleep patterns, and managing symptoms of certain mental health disorders.

mental health yoga

Exercises such as mental health yoga, stretches, running, and walking, have all been studied to help improve mental health.

Coping skills

In reality, stress is unavoidable in life, hence the need to develop coping skills and mechanisms that need to be activated in times of stress. Coping mechanisms are important in dealing with stressful events. Examples of coping skills include listening to music, eating, games, singing, and meditation (13).

Get a mental health coach

In achieving optimal mental health, both in prevention, and promotion of mental health, it is important to have a brain health coach for guidance. The mental health coach is also referred to as a brain health coach.

A brain health coach is a learned fellow who will motivate and train his or her clients on steps to take to achieve optimal mental health. They provide the appropriate tools and help set personal mental health goals for their clients (14).

The Mental Health Network To Improve Mental Health

The goal of a Mental Health Network is to enhance competency and commitment, as well as the delivery and integration of support and medical services across the State, in hopes of enhancing the results and outcomes of patients with mental health disorders.

The mental health network performs its functions by :

  • Engaging: Promoting efficient communication between important players, such as the Mental and Physical Health Commission, which is part of the State Department of Health, as well as customers and their families, caregivers or other support people, and medical experts.
  • Learning: Sharing ideas, expertise, and information.
  • Informing: Provide unbiased and knowledgeable guidance (15)

Mental Health Collective

The mental health Collective is a treatment program that uses a variety of therapy modalities and is operated by experienced physicians to evaluate and treat these people (18+) with mental disorders and mental health quiet riots.

The Collective offers clinical care that is result oriented and guided by neurobiology in an environment that is rooted in the community and where clients are given the support they need to successfully manage problems in life.

When determining a diagnosis and setting treatment objectives for outcome-driven care, Mental Health Collective frequently measures and observes client behavior using psychological evaluations and other assessment methods.

An objective assessment of neurodiverse problems, personality characteristics, and the accurate diagnosis of mood disorders can all be achieved through the use of psychological testing as part of a multidisciplinary diagnostic measure (16,17).

References:

  1. https://www.cdc.gov/mentalhealth/learn/index.htm#:~:text=Mental+health+includes+our+emotional,childhood+and+adolescence+through+adulthood.
  2. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/mental-health-strengthening-our-response
  3. https://www.redoakrecovery.com/addiction-blog/emotional-health-vs-mental-health/#:~:text=Emotional+health+is+the+ability,with+stress+and+manage+emotions.
  4. https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/mental-health-wellbeing-illness-whats-difference-nick/
  5. https://happiful.com/the-difference-between-mental-health-and-wellbeing
  6. https://ontario.cmha.ca/documents/connection-between-mental-and-physical-health/
  7. https://www.webmd.com/mental-health/how-does-mental-health-affect-physical-health
  8. https://www.telus.com/en/blog/care-centres/10-reasons-why-mental-health-is-important
  9. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/154543#types
  10. https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/mental-disorders
  11. https://www.who.int/campaigns/world-mental-health-day
  12. https://mentalhealth-uk.org/mental-health-awareness-week/
  13. https://www.healthline.com/health/mental-health/habits-to-improve-mental-health#try-physical-activity
  14. https://practice.do/blog/what-is-a-mental-health-coach#:~:text=Mental+health+coaches+motivate+their,professionals+like+psychologists+or+counselors.
  15. https://www.mhc.wa.gov.au/about-us/mental-health-network/about-the-mental-health-network/
  16. https://www.allkindsoftherapy.com/treatment/the-mental-health-collective
  17. https://themhcollective.com/
  18. https://authenticallydel.com/mental-health-goals/