Mental Health: It’s Time to Make It a Priority

Physical wellness is too often prioritised over mental health. While it is important to take care of your body, it is equally as important to focus on mental wellness too.

Making mental health a priority does not need to be complicated. You do not have to take an expensive vacation to relax or spend every single night meditating. This article will detail why it is important to take care of yourself mentally and list some everyday self-care routines.

Defining mental health

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), mental health “is a state of well-being… and is fundamental to our collective and individual ability.” 

In other terms, mental health allows us to “think, emote and interact with others.” Promoting mental health allows people to improve their psychological state.

Usually, mental health is colloquially termed “good” or “bad.” However, this adds to stigmas people face and cannot be used accurately to describe everyone’s experience. The impacts of psychological health differ greatly between all sorts of people.

Medical News Today explains “peak mental health is about looking after ongoing wellness and happiness.” When life becomes stressful or overwhelming, it can be hard to look out for our individual happiness and prioritise wellness.

When people experience mental illness, it can create a variety of complications. Additionally, these indicators manifest themselves in various ways depending on the individual.

The Mayo Clinic lists the below as some common symptoms that arise due to overlooking mental wellness:

  • Feeling sad or down
  • Confused thinking or reduced ability to concentrate
  • Excessive fears or worries, or extreme feelings of guilt
  • Extreme mood changes of highs and lows
  • Withdrawal from friends and activities
  • Significant tiredness, low energy or problems sleeping
  • Inability to cope with daily problems or stress
  • Major changes in eating habits
  • Excessive anger, hostility or violence
  • Suicidal thinking

Why is spreading awareness important?

Mental health awareness is often overlooked, so it is important to promote it whenever possible. Additionally, it is essential to let those know struggling with this that they are not alone.

Spreading vital information about psychological health allows for people to resist the stigmas that accompany it. 

Raising awareness about mental wellness can help people recognise the signs and when to seek help. Additionally, being aware of the signs allows individuals to be proactive in their mental healthcare.

A major part of mental health awareness is rejecting the stigmas. Too often, people struggling with mental health deal with shame and pressure of needing to prioritise their wellness.

The first step in taking care of yourself is by feeling supported by those around you. People should not have to feel ashamed of taking a mental health day.

Since mental health can impact people differently, the remedies will vary as well. Below are some simple ways you can practice self care and prioritise.

Taking care of yourself

The list of self-care practices is never ending. Here are a few simple things you can do to take care of your mental wellness.

  • Journalling: this is a great way to express your feelings, thoughts and reflect on your day
  • Hangout with family or friends
  • Spend the day outside, get some fresh air
  • Pinpoint reasons for your stress, think of ways to find balance
  • Experiment in the kitchen with new recipes
  • Take a mental health day off work: when your body is telling you to slow down, listen!
  • Seek out therapy or counselling: it’s more than okay to reach out when you need help
  • Spend the day doing things that make you happy: get back into your hobbies!
  • Meditate or practice yoga: mindfulness allows you to focus in on your intuition and can create a sense of relaxation

This list is not exhaustive. There are many other forms of self care and mental rejuvenation. Finding the activities and habits that best suit you is key.

Finding down time in your busy schedule is already difficult enough. However, it is important to remember to take time for yourself when you’re feeling burnt out. 

Listen to yourself and be aware of the signs. Your mental wellness should not be pushed to the wayside. 


5 Ways Meditation Affects Your Body

Meditation is becoming more and more popular as stress levels get higher and higher. You try to juggle way too many things between work and your personal life that you feel like a train running at full speed. The stress of that can really take a toll on your body. One of the easiest ways to combat the effects of stress on the body is one you might not expect, meditation! Although meditation seems like an exercise just for your brain, there are 5 ways meditation affects your body.

You know that physical exercise positively affects your brain, but did you know that mediation has the same affect but on your body? In fact, meditation can be just as important for your body as exercise. Physical activity is a great way to relieve stress but it can only do so much. Stress leads to sleep problems, headaches, high blood pressure, a weakened immune system, and even weight gain to name a few. Between work and your personal life it can be exhausting. The good news is that meditation will help you fight stress and it’s never been easier to start thanks to apps and the Internet.

What is Meditation?

Meditation is estimated to be over 5,000 years old and is still practiced by Buddhist monks. These monks view meditation as a mental exercise resulting in a calm and luminous mind. They pursue meditation to gain liberation, awakening, and Nirvana. Nowadays meditation is practiced by people around the world for various reasons. It is defined as a mental exercise in which you engage in contemplation or reflection. Meditation is a skill that takes practice and time. It will be difficult to sit with your mind at first but you will discover a sense of calm and clarity over time.

Meditation is a mental exercise and is known for it’s positive affects on the brain. It improves your focus and attention and even your ability to work in stressful situations. It has been proven that long-term meditators are able to process and make decisions faster. Meditation results in heightened emotional intelligence and mental strength. It positively affects your memory and ability to learn, in addition to better self-awareness and compassion. Mindfulness practices can decrease depression, reduce anxiety, and manage Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). There are so many reasons why you should practice meditation when it comes to your brain, but in what ways does it affect your body?

5 Ways Meditation Affects the Body

Strengthens Your Immune System

Meditation reduces your stress levels which means your body doesn’t have to work as hard to protect itself from said stress. This means that your body can spend more time focusing on fighting illnesses and infections. A study from Harvard Medical School proved that those who practice meditation develop higher immunity as a result of improved mitochondrial energy production, consumption, and resiliency. Eating superfoods and meditating will be your first line of defense against cold season.

Reduces Risk of Heart Diseases

Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both women and men in the world. If you are at risk for heart disease, the good news is that meditation can significantly reduce your risk for heart disease, stroke, and even death over time. Just three months of practicing meditation can reduce your blood pressure. Meditation relaxes your body and lowers stress so much that it opens up your blood vessels, increasing blood flow and circulation. Pair meditation with heart healthy foods and your heart will definitely thank you.

Improves Women’s Health

Meditation is proven to be effective at treating premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Studies have shown that PMS symptoms were reduced by a whopping 58% (which means fewer cramps). Also the symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes and mood swings were reduced with regular meditation. Pregnant women who practice meditation are more likely to deliver a baby full-term with lowered stress and anxiety.

Reduces Inflammation in the Body

Meditation affects your body on a genetic and cellular level. Studies have proven that meditation reduces pro-inflammatory genes – which means that your body can physically recover faster from stress. It also prevents cellular inflammation. Meditation is even more effective than nutritional education, exercise, and music therapy at preventing arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, and inflammatory bowel disease.

May Make You Live Longer

By reducing overall day-to-day stress, meditation may slow down how our cells age. Through an increased positive state of mind and hormonal factors you may be able to live longer. This is in addition to the effect meditation has on reducing the risk of heart disease and premature death. Meditation also reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s.

Every year more and more studies come back with positive ways meditation affects the body. With nationwide stress levels at a historical highs, we all might need some meditation in our lives. No matter what your sources of stress are, meditation will benefit you in more than one way.

How Can I Practice Meditation?

Whether you’re looking to gain a better sense of calm and clarity or benefit from the health benefits of meditation, we have good news. Practicing meditation has never been easier. There’s a wide selection of apps you can download on your phone or tablet that walk you through basic meditation. There are also guided meditation videos you can find on online. Whether you have 3 minutes or an hour, there’s a meditation exercise for that.


With just one quick search in your app store for “meditation” and you will find numerous apps with guided meditations and breathing exercises. These include apps such as The Mindfulness App, Headspace, Calm, and buddhify to name a few. Everyone’s mindfulness journey is different so it’s recommended that you download a few to see which one will work best for you. Some of these apps may require subscriptions or in-app purchases.


If you’re looking for a free option, YouTube has a crazy amount of guided meditations and music to meditate to. All you need is an internet connection and you can find hours of different kinds of meditations.

Online Guided Meditation Teacher

There are clinical psychologists that offer free samples of online guided meditations. These psychologists may offer guided meditations available to download onto your phone or computer to listen to.


Check out the numerous podcasts that have guided meditations for any topic from breathing exercising to whole body relaxation. They also deal with topics such as grief or self-improvement and even affirmations.

Meditation Centers

A quick search online can direct you to local meditation centers that offer instructors and a group atmosphere. This may also include restorative yoga classes which focus on calming poses.

These 5 ways meditation affects your body are just a few of the reasons why you should make it a part of your daily routine. Learning how to meditate will take time. Yet no matter how you choose to practice meditation, it will be a skill for life and your body will thank you.