Did you know that your environment can affect your mental health? Lots of studies have shown that negative environments and/or environments that lack positive stimuli can have a strong negative effect on your health. One of the most observed cases of this are the effects of living in urban or inner city areas. Studies generally show increased stress, anxiety, hopelessness, and other mental health problems among people who live in such areas. Many researchers suggest that a primary cause of this is a form of what’s known as sensory deprivation.
Do you ever get sad or depressed over the holidays? It turns out this is actually pretty common. Every year I see people get depressed over the months of November and December, and sometimes they disappear from counseling until the new year. When talking with people about their winter depression, there are a few themes that stand out.
A few weeks ago BuzzFeed observed a mental health awareness week. They posted several well made videos about mental health. Usually I choose one or two videos on a topic and incorporate them into a blog post, but BuzzFeed made so many good videos that I’ve decided to just compile some of them here. I hope one/some of these speak to you in a useful way.
Looking back over your life, do you ever think about how negative events tend to stand out in your memory more than positive ones? Given relatively similar negative and positive experiences, we tend to focus more on negative ones. In psychology this is known as the negativity bias. Think about it, would you have a stronger emotional reaction to somebody giving you $40 or someone stealing $40 from you? Which of the two would you be more likely to remember several years down the line?
I frequently post images with inspirational quotes on my business’s facebook page. This week I posted this one and it received far more views than most other images that I have uploaded.
Do you have depression in your life? This video seems to be meant to talk about depression, but it could be seen as speaking to the suffering of a number of other mental health issues like anxiety, and trauma. Sometimes when a person suffers from anxiety or depression, it can be hard to separate the symptoms from the person and it can feel like you are the depression or anxiety.