A Missing Link In Mental Health (Hint: It’s Not What You Think)
Do you know someone with a mental health condition? Or perhaps that person is you.
Almost everyone knows someone who suffers or has suffered from a mental health condition.
Let’s look at the stats:
One in five Americans are affected by mental health conditions yearly. That’s an astounding 43.8 million reported, according to the National Alliance on Mental Health. No doubt leaving a significant amount of unreported cases, as well.
As mental health continues to be a growing concern, it’s important to look at the whole picture to promote balance and in turn healing.
When you think of mental health, do you also associate it with spirituality?
You’re not alone if you don’t. In fact, most people don’t associate mental health with spirituality.
A MISSING LINK IN MENTAL HEALTH (HINT: IT’S NOT WHAT YOU THINK)
Spirituality has an important role in mental health without a doubt.
- To be seen
- To be heard
- To matter
When these core spiritual hungers are not met, all kinds of mental and physical imbalances can develop.
At ITN, we seek to not only help you discover what you’re really hungry for, but to also help you feed those hungers and prevent disconnection.
This disconnection that is causing so many mental health conditions.
Disease results from a combination of genetics and the environment. Another way to say this is that disease is the result of physiological imbalances or disordered living or both.
Disconnection (poor spiritual health) is a key feature of disordered living.
It is only through a connection that you will achieve life balance. This is the crux of how spiritual health influences physical and mental health.
We know that was a lot to take in, just know that you can achieve life balance. We have the tools for you to do just that!
1. WHAT IS PERSONAL SPIRITUALITY?
Personal spirituality refers to your personal journey. Personal spirituality can only be defined by your exploration of your beliefs. Yes, this means spending some quiet time going within.
Personal spirituality goes beyond the construct of organized religion — though, for many, that’s a part of their spiritual existence — and encompasses what you truly believe about your place in the universe.
You may already have a clear definition of personal spirituality. You may feel right about your path, and you may already be actively living a life that aligns with your spiritual needs.
Conversely, you may be experiencing a disconnect both with the world around you and yourself. Know that you are not alone.
You are supported and loved. Know that there are ways to find that connection!
Here are some ways to strengthen your personal spirituality:
- Spend time alone and in silence. This may feel uncomfortable at first, but trust us when we say it does get easier!
- Give yourself permission to feel any feelings that you need to. Allowing feelings to be felt and come to the surface promotes health. On the other hand, hiding or ignoring your feelings may lead to dis-ease.
- Journal! Pick up a beautiful journal and find a pen that writes nicely and start writing! There is no right or wrong. Begin with anything. At first, this may feel uncomfortable. With time, it can become therapeutic. Use these prompts to get you started, “What brings me joy?” or “What fulfills me?”
2. WHAT IS COMMUNAL SPIRITUALITY?
Just as personal spirituality encourages you to find a sense of purpose and world-connection within ourselves, communal spirituality encourages you to explore this in others.
To develop your communal spirituality you must go forth and find a connection with others.
The word “communal” means shared by all members of a community. Your community refers to a feeling of fellowship with others based on shared experiences, traits, interests, goals, or beliefs. This can include your church, your family, or your friends.
By connecting with people in your community, you develop your communal spirituality.
3. WHAT IS ENVIRONMENTAL SPIRITUALITY?
Like personal spirituality and communal spirituality, environmental spirituality requires you to consider your place in the world.
Rather than your inner self or how you interact with your community, environmental spirituality asks you to consider your relationship with the environment.
To do this, you need to get outside! Try these activities to connect deeper with Mama Nature and your environmental spirituality:
- Walk outdoors
- Volunteer at a nature reserve
- Breath in the fresh air
- Walk barefoot outside
As you do the above activities, stop to consider how the world sustains you. Take the time to appreciate and give thanks for this connection.
HEALING MENTAL HEALTH THROUGH SPIRITUALITY
There are numerous ways to enhance and health any mental disconnection. Use the techniques listed above to create spiritual balance and mental well-being.
Also returning back to these simple techniques can be a powerful way to keep your personal, communal, and environmental spirituality in alignment. Use this on yourself, your clients, or with loved ones!
Be sure to share this article with anyone you feel needs a little encouragement and spiritual balancing.
How do you use spirituality to bring ease to your mental well-being? Tell us below!
Improving your memory is another wonderful way to improve mental health! Check out this article for tools on how to boost your memory!