Happy Mental Health Awareness Week
Happy Mental Health Awareness Week everyone! The theme for this year's week is relationships.
Happy Mental Health Awareness Week everyone! The theme for this year's week is relationships. Our mental health cannot be separated from the relationships we have with others, which inform our sense of self, our experience of wellbeing and our notion of ourselves and our ability to thrive in the world. Again and again, studies looking at what keeps human beings healthy, physically and emotionally, find that the most important element is the bonds we have with others. Money, fame, credentials, achievements, material possessions....all fall far down the list and consistently show up as significantly less predictive of positive mental health outcomes than relationships themselves.
People in stable and loving relationships live longer, are ill less often, experience less stress, are less likely to be diagnosed with mental health and physical health conditions, have stronger hearts, and more commonly achieve a deep sense of fulfillment. "No man is an island" as John Donne once poetically put it; we are social beings and both crave and need love and connection with others.
Perhaps then the kindest and most beneficial thing we can do for ourselves this week is to nurture, explore and nourish the connections we have with those we love. Make that phone call, reach out that hand, extend those arms for a hug. We are likely to live a longer and healthier life if we do.