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6 lifestyle habits that can affect your mental wellbeing

Author: Cynthia Madison
by Cynthia Madison
Posted: Oct 15, 2019
mental wellbeing

Making conscious lifestyle choices is vital for good overall health. However, making healthy decisions takes more than just having a healthy diet and exercising every day. It also takes a positive attitude, feelings, and thoughts to feel good. Here are 6 lifestyle habits that can affect your mental wellbeing:

1. Being a perfectionist

Being a perfectionist isn’t necessarily bad because it motivates you to do your best to get top results from everything that you do. The pursuit of excellence can help you improve yourself to achieve success in your career and personal life.

However, the constant need to do everything perfectly all the time can be very consuming and overwhelming. When you start feeling dissatisfaction because something didn’t turn out to be exactly as you expected it to, it may be a habit that will start affecting your mental wellbeing.

Perfectionism as a healthy habit means setting goals that can be reached and seeing failures and mistakes as something that you can grow out of. However, the negative habit of perfectionism includes setting goals that anyone can hardly reach, feeling down when you fail, and constantly worrying about failure or the disapproval of your peers. Perfectionism as a negative habit can make you experience high levels of stress, anxiety, and the inability to be aware of how much you have achieved in your life.

2. Having a failure mindset

We all seem to be more or less pessimistic in some moments of our lives, especially when the chances for success are extremely low. However, having a failure mindset means pessimism at a whole new level. Fostering negative thoughts about your chances to succeed in what you are doing will most likely interfere with your ability to succeed.

Due to the fact that you are constantly worrying that you are not going to succeed, you tend to lose your focus, motivation and tend to often abandon the goals you have set.

3. Suppressing emotions

Being able to display a smile and internalize your emotions during a critical situation sounds like common sense, right? Well, not exactly. While it may be the polite thing to do because it prevents you from displaying an aggressive and angry attitude towards your peers, it can actually have a huge impact on your emotional and mental wellbeing.

Specialists explain that internalizing your emotions and not expressing them when you experience them can cause anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem. Over time, gathering all the negative emotions and thoughts without expressing them will become a ticking time bomb that may be causing real consequences when it explodes. Even the smallest inconvenience can make you lose your common sense and express everything that you have internalized up until now.

4. Not being grateful

In today’s world, when wellness has become a very hot topic, gratefulness is seen as one of the healthiest habits to have a balanced life and a healthy mind. Gratefulness helps you be aware and enjoy the present moment and everything you have achieved up until now, without worrying about the past or the future.

The inability to be grateful for the present moment is another unhealthy habit that can have a huge impact on your mental wellbeing. Constantly worrying about the past or about what future will bring only makes you miss the beauty of the present moment. Keep in mind that the past can’t be changed and the future can’t be controlled. All that matters is how you enjoy and take advantage of where you are in your life at the moment.

5. Overusing Social Media

In today’s digitalized world, social media platforms have become the primary source of entertainment for most of us. You scroll through your news feed and see thousands of photos, videos, and statuses from your virtual friends. There seems nothing wrong with that, right? But did it ever occur to you that this habit can actually affect your mental wellbeing?

So, you see your friends’ photos where they seem to have the perfect life, the perfect relationship, and the time and money to take a 5-star vacation. Think about how that makes you feel. You may feel happy for them, but don’t you also feel just a little bit jealous? A new study published in the Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology shows that overusing Social Media can cause depression and low self-esteem. What you see on Social Media from your virtual friends are only the positive aspects of their lives. However, it can make you have lower self-esteem when you constantly compare your life with the lives of others.

6. Unhealthy habits

Unhealthy lifestyle habits can include a multitude of things and bad choices that you make in your life. From not exercising enough to staying up until late hours, eating junk food and smoking or drinking alcohol, all these habits can play a major role in decreasing your wellbeing.

Having a sedentary life and eating unhealthy foods can bring a multitude of health risks and consequences including heart disease, risk of obesity, diabetes, and poor mental health. While exercising can help you decrease stress and anxiety and improves your mood, having a sedentary life and poor eating habits do the exact opposite.

Smoking and drinking are two of the most destructive lifestyle habits that can have various physical and mental wellbeing consequences. It has been found that alcohol use leads to depression and anxiety symptoms. People who consume high amounts of alcohol are more vulnerable to developing mental health conditions.

Also, although smoking seems to be a relaxing habit, evidence shows that it actually increases anxiety and tension. The withdrawal symptoms experienced by smokers after the supply of nicotine decreases from the body lead to agitation, stress, and anxiety.

The lack of proper sleep can have a huge impact on your mental wellbeing. Sleeping is vital for your brain and body to recover during the night. Not getting enough sleep can affect your brain functions, increase heart disease risks, and make you anxious and unable to focus.

It takes both good mental and physical health to feel good and be able to enjoy your life. And unhealthy or toxic habits should certainly not be part of the play for a healthy and happy life.

About the Author

Cynthia Madison is a young blogger and economics and marketing graduate. She writes about home, lifestyle and family topics and is a senior contributor to popular niche publications.

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Author: Cynthia Madison
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Cynthia Madison

Member since: Jun 30, 2017
Published articles: 76

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