Mental stress is a widespread phenomenon in our fast-moving “always on” society. We often accept it as unavoidable, but at best countermeasures must be taken immediately at the first signs to prevent isolated periods of stress from escalating into long-term stress that poses a health hazard. According to the DAK Health Report 2018, this permanent stress can lead to mental illness, which is the main cause of days of incapacity for work after diseases of the musculoskeletal system.
You can find a detailed article on musculoskeletal disorders and the preventive approach to them here.
The report also shows that the number of days of incapacity to work due to mental illness has risen steadily in recent years – in all age groups.
In order to be able to take preventive action against mental illnesses, we have compiled 5 tips for your mental health:
In the hope that this will save time and enable us to complete our tasks more quickly, we often do without time for breaks during stressful work phases. Small breaks in these situations are especially important to stay mentally healthy. If you find it difficult to consistently keep to breaks, you can simply enter them in your calendar and have them remembered.
The appointment with oneself should be taken just as seriously as any other. Moving does not apply! Everyone can invest 5-10 minutes break – no matter how high the workload is. Because after a short break one is again more concentrated and catches up the few minutes loosely again. As a general rule, every effort phase should be followed by a rest phase. The intervals at which these phases are clocked are of course up to you.
Switching off the smartphone, PC and TV
Our brain is exposed to a flood of stimuli and information most of the day. We can hardly escape many influences. However, each individual can personalize a not inconsiderable part. The constant availability via the smartphone can also cause stress during private use – those who reach for their mobile phones every few minutes to retrieve messages quickly reach several hours of use a day.
Many are even overcome by the fear of missing something important if their smartphone is forgotten at home. If you want to get your head free again, you should leave your mobile phone and other digital devices like PC or TV switched off more often. In order to take a first step in the right direction, it can be helpful to plan such a conscious shutdown.
Already an evening during the week or an hour after each meal without Smartphone, television and CO. can work very liberating. In this “digital-free time” you can instead devote yourself to much more important things – such as yourself. This is exactly the topic that so-called “digital detox” camps are dedicated to. You can find a detailed article about this here.
Acquiring relaxation techniques
First of all, everyone should individually find out for themselves what is the best way to relax. Whether a planned moment of pleasure, a massage, a long bath, or an acquired relaxation technique – the main thing is that it does you good. Some people find it helpful to condition themselves through autogenic training or meditation.
With a little practice, for example, it is possible to switch off at a certain song. Sports, reading and drawing can also be effective stress killers. Everyone should try out different strategies in order to find the right relaxation aid for themselves.
Friends and family
Instead of spending too much time in the virtual world, we should focus much more on maintaining our social contacts. Instead of constantly communicating with friends via your smartphone, you can simply arrange to meet them for an evening after work.
There you can talk in peace. Positive social contacts stabilise the personality and strengthen self-confidence. The support of family and friends can work wonders in stressful situations. Especially city dwellers should take care not to fall into loneliness due to the increased stress level and anonymity.
Talking about problems
When meeting friends and family there is also the opportunity to talk about what is on your mind. Often it is enough to have said the problem once to feel better. If the people around you know what is bothering you, they also have the opportunity to help you with words and deeds. If mental tension persists over a long period of time, it is worth consulting a specialist to identify the causes of mental stress.
On your health trip, you will kill several birds with one stone: you will have time to rest, learn the relaxation techniques that will help you personally, and receive spiritual support from proven experts. Apart from everyday life, it is also easier to take your smartphone out of your hand more often and concentrate on yourself. At the same time you will learn comprehensive health competence in connection with mental health. In this way you can not only help yourself, but also other affected people.
The health trip primarily provides preventive work. Patients with mental problems that have already progressed strongly are advised to consult a doctor or therapist.