7 Tips to Boost Psychological Well-Being

We often use the new year as a trigger to make change, and sometimes we resolve to make a change towards positivity and improving our overall well-being. Although we are well into 2017 now, it is still important to assess our current state of mental health and consider different strategies to enhance our well-being.

1. ACTS OF KINDNESS – Research shows that performing kind acts was associated with increases in positive emotions. Whether it’s writing a thank you letter to someone who has made a difference in your life or giving genuine compliments to strangers, bringing a smile to others lifts our mood in return.

2. DEVELOP AND PRACTICE GRATITUDE – Write down three things you appreciate about your day before you to bed. It may be as simple as, “My boss complimented my work on the report I completed ” or “I enjoyed walking my dog today”. Taking just a few minutes to complete this exercise every day allows you to recall and focus on the positive aspects and the uplifting feelings associated with it.

3. SPEND TIME IN GREEN SPACES – Higher levels of satisfaction with life in general has been linked to being nearby nature. With many Australians living in cities and urban environments, taking a walk through a park and getting away to the wilderness can improve our quality of life by obtaining physical, mental and spiritual healing.

4. BE MINDFUL – Ruminating about the past and anticipating the future takes our focus away from being in the moment and limits our opportunity to see everything the present can offer. When we pay attention to what we see, hear, smell, taste and feel during everyday activities, we feel more positive, curious about the world and improve our focus by minimising stress.

5. FIND AND DEVELOP A PASSION – Naturally, engaging in activities that make us happy makes us feel good and gives us something to look forward to. Learning something new keeps us mentally stimulated and building skills improves our self-confidence and we can share this with others.

6. LAUGH – We’ve all heard that laughter is the best medicine. Patch Adams, a famous movie starring Robin Williams is a good example of this. Watching a comedy show, playing games or listening to podcasts of your favourite comedians are great ways to release feel-good brain chemicals (e.g. endorphins), which helps reduce pain, improve performance and feeling connected with others.

7. CONNECT WITH POSITIVE PEOPLE – Following on from the previous point, spending time with negative people can bring us down and take a toll on our mental outlook. In contrast, spending time with uplifting people allows us to feel a range of positive emotions including social inclusiveness, interpersonal trust and compassion.

I hope this post has inspired you with some strategies to improve your well-being for a healthy 2017!

Lucia Do