18 psychological well-being factors for your mental health

18 psychological well-being factors for your mental health. How do you take care of your psychological state? In this article, we explore psychological well-being in all its aspects, look at the factors that influence it, those that “make it sick”, and share practical tips on how to take care of our mental health.

What you will find in this post:

  • What is meant by psychological well-being
  • Why is mental health important?
  • The impact of mental health on collective well-being
  • 18 factors of psychological well-being
  • Mental health: what are the risk factors
psychological well-being

Let’s start with a fundamental question: what is meant by psychological well-being?

The WHO (World Health Organisation) defines psychological well-being as a state in which a person is able to achieve mental and emotional balance, enabling them to use their abilities to solve problems, establish positive and mature interpersonal relationships with others, adapt to change, make decisions and cope effectively with daily challenges.

Psychological well-being was also included in the MDGs as part of the concept of health, noting that to be considered healthy, “people must be able to feel comfortable in the circumstances in which they live”.

As already mentioned, mental health is not only the absence of psychological disorders, but also a state of well-being that allows a person to realise their potential, cope with normal daily stresses, work productively and contribute to their community.

The impact of psychological well-being on other aspects of life

Because psychological well-being affects the way we think, feel and act, when a person suffers from mental health problems, it can negatively impact all aspects of their life: from work, to family life, to social relationships.

For example, disorders such as anxiety and depression can limit a person’s ability to participate fully in daily life, reducing their productivity (defined as their ability to work and create value in the world) and increasing – over time – their risk of other long-term health conditions.

Mental and physical health

Mental health is in fact closely linked to physical health. That is why mental health problems can sometimes contribute to the development of chronic diseases such as heart disease and diabetes, and directly influence certain unhealthy behaviours such as smoking, alcohol and drug abuse. Conversely, chronic illnesses can themselves exacerbate mental health problems, creating a vicious cycle that is often difficult to break.

Mental health has consequences that go far beyond the individual.

In a community, high levels of mental health and well-being contribute to greater productivity, social cohesion and solidarity. Communities with high levels of mental well-being are better prepared to cope with collective challenges, such as economic crises or natural disasters. Mental health and society

Improving collective mental health also has a direct impact on social structures and economies, given that unmanaged mental health problems can lead to significant economic costs, from health services to social assistance.

Mental health as a shared responsibility

Taking care of mental health is therefore a shared responsibility that benefits every part of society. By raising awareness and understanding, and investing in support and prevention services, we can build more resilient and inclusive communities where everyone has the opportunity to maintain and improve their psychological well-being.

Let’s take a look at what elements underpin our well-being

18 factors of psychological well-being

Below we look at some of the key elements that define it.

1) Interpersonal relationships

Surrounding ourselves with meaningful relationships (family, friendships and love) contributes to our psychological well-being by providing emotional support, reducing stress (enabling us to cope better with adversity) and increasing our sense of belonging, contributing to the development of healthy self-esteem.

2) Physical health

The mind and body are not two separate entities. Mental and physical health affect each other. That’s why regular exercise, a balanced diet and good quality sleep are important factors that contribute to maintaining a high level of our overall well-being.

3) Security and stability

Living in a safe and stable environment is fundamental to psychological well-being, as it provides a solid foundation on which to build one’s life. A sense of security and stability reduces the stress and anxiety caused by uncertainty, allowing people to focus on their development and interpersonal relationships without the burden of immediate concerns. Confidence in a safe and stable environment creates the conditions for a sense of predictability and control needed to move confidently through life’s inevitable obstacles.

4) Quality of thoughts

The quality of our thoughts has a powerful impact on our mood, emotions and actions. Therefore, it is very important to be aware of the thoughts we cultivate. On the one hand, it is important to accept even unpleasant thoughts as part of the human experience, but on the other hand, constantly feeding the mind with negative, destructive and critical thoughts can significantly damage our self-esteem and limit our ability to effectively cope with life’s challenges.

5) Managing emotions

The ability to recognise, understand and effectively manage your emotions is a key aspect of psychological well-being. It’s not just about cultivating positive emotions (which is equally important), but also about learning to manage unpleasant emotions. Recognising, accepting, processing and managing unpleasant emotions such as sadness, fear and anger is an important step in promoting mental health and psychological well-being.

6) Self-esteem

Self-esteem is another important aspect of our psychological well-being: a good level of self-esteem inspires confidence in our abilities and contributes to more balanced and satisfying relationships. Self-esteem also acts as a shield against excessive criticism and self-destructive perfectionism, promoting a more compassionate attitude towards oneself. A good self-esteem also leads to less stress and anxiety, contributing to a calmer and more proactive attitude to life.

7) Resilience

Resilience, understood as the ability to cope with and overcome difficulties or stress, is crucial for psychological well-being, as it allows a person to recover from difficulties and adapt positively to new conditions and realities. Resilience fosters perseverance and encourages learning from negative experiences, turning them into opportunities for personal growth. Resilience helps to maintain a more optimistic outlook on life, strengthens self-esteem and promotes healthy interpersonal relationships, which are the foundation of good mental health.

8) Working environment

A positive, collaborative work environment reduces stress, prevents burnout and increases motivation. A bright, ergonomic space improves concentration and physical health, thus affecting our mood; an inclusive and supportive corporate culture strengthens a sense of belonging and self-esteem. Finally, recognition, clear role definitions and effective communication prevent misunderstandings and conflicts, contributing to stability and greater job satisfaction.

9) Education and lifelong learning

Education and the opportunity to continue learning stimulate curiosity and personal growth, increase self-esteem by providing ongoing goals and a sense of achievement, and reduce the risk of cognitive decline by keeping the mind active and flexible. They also support social relationships through shared interests and skills, and help you adapt to change by providing valuable tools to deal with uncertainty with more confidence and competence.

If you found this content useful and would like to learn more information and practical tools, please visit our category on Spiritual Practices to help you continue your journey to better psychological well-being.

Spiritual Practices

10) Financial security

Financial security is an important element of our psychological well-being, primarily because it reduces the stress associated with everyday uncertainty. It also increases the opportunities for choice and control over one’s own life, giving more freedom to achieve personal goals. This, in turn, leads to a tangible improvement in quality of life and overall perception of individual well-being.

11) Work-life balance

Setting aside time for personal interests, relaxation and interpersonal relationships is essential for good mental health. When you balance work responsibilities and personal interests effectively, you reduce the risk of burnout and promote an overall sense of satisfaction and control over your life.

12) A sense of belonging and identity

A sense of belonging to a community and a clear personal and cultural identity contribute to a sense of security and well-being. These are the roots that give integrity and continuity to the individual, acting as an important support in overcoming life’s challenges. Belonging to a community provides support, understanding and a sense of security, which is crucial for overcoming isolation and alienation – factors that are often associated with disorders such as depression and anxiety.

13) Self-realisation

According to Maslow’s pyramid of needs, self-actualisation is fundamental to psychological well-being as it gives meaning and purpose to a person’s life. Feeling fulfilled means achieving a match between who you are internally and what you express in the world, reducing internal conflicts and increasing feelings of accomplishment and satisfaction. This state has a positive impact on self-esteem and resilience, important elements of our emotional balance.

14) Stress management

The ability to manage stress is crucial for psychological well-being, as chronic stress can worsen mental health by undermining our emotional balance. Learning stress management techniques allows us to reduce our exposure to stressors, promoting greater peace of mind and the realisation that we are able to cope with the inevitable stressors that permeate our lives. While it is impossible to eliminate stress completely, it is important to keep it at a manageable level so that we can face everyday life with more clarity, confidence and less anxiety.

15) Values, meaning and the meaning of life

Knowing personal values acts as an internal compass, guiding behaviour and decisions in line with the authentic self, and thus reducing stress levels. The meaning attributed to experiences enriches life with emotional depth, contributing to resilience in the face of adversity. A sense of purpose acts as an internal driver, guiding us towards goals and aspirations that foster a sense of self-efficacy and personal satisfaction.

16) Access to medical and psychological care

Access to medical and psychological care provides an important support network for people, enabling early diagnosis, prevention and timely intervention. Thus, access to medical treatment and/or ongoing psychological support contributes to a significant improvement in the quality of life.

17) Freedom and autonomy

The ability to make independent choices enables people to pursue meaningful personal goals and increases their sense of control over their lives. When people feel free to express themselves and act in accordance with their values and desires, they experience greater authenticity and personal satisfaction. Such conditions contribute to increased resilience, adaptability and stress reduction, which are key components of good mental health.

18) Connection with nature

Spending time in the natural environment or playing sports outdoors has a very significant impact on our psychological state. Humans were born to live in natural environments, not in artificial spaces. Nature is a great ally for reducing stress and anxiety, improving concentration and promoting a greater sense of calm.

It is important to emphasise that these factors can vary greatly from person to person and can be influenced by a variety of cultural, social and personal factors. However, their interaction helps to determine our level of psychological well-being.

Mental health is an integral aspect of everyone’s overall well-being, although it is often vulnerable to numerous risk factors that can significantly alter it.

1) Lifestyle

Our lifestyle has a direct impact on our mental health. Here are some aspects to consider.

  • Physical inactivity

A sedentary lifestyle, characterised by low physical activity, can have a negative impact on mental health. Instead, regular exercise is known to reduce symptoms of anxiety and brooding, improve mood and build self-esteem.

  • Poorly balanced diet

An unbalanced diet can have a negative impact on mental health: consuming large amounts of refined sugar, saturated fat and junk food can increase the risk of certain psychological disorders and worsen the symptoms of existing mental illnesses.

  • Substance use and abuse

Substance abuse (such as alcohol, drugs and medications) can have a direct impact on our mental health.

  • Sleep deprivation and sleep disorders

Sleep problems, such as insomnia, can be both symptoms and risk factors for mental health. Sleep deprivation has negative consequences that impair the ability to regulate emotions and cope with stress, increasing vulnerability to psychological distress.

2) Environmental and social factors

Environmental and social experiences play a key role in shaping our mental health. Understanding these elements and working with them is crucial to achieving satisfactory mental health.

  • Stressful events in life

Stressful life events, such as job loss, divorce, bereavement or major life changes, can negatively impact our ability to adapt. Prolonged exposure to these events or a lack of effective processing and management can sometimes lead to the development of psychological disorders such as anxiety and depression. If stressors are concentrated in the workplace, they can lead to burnout, causing a state of physical, emotional and mental exhaustion.

  • Stereotypes, prejudice and discrimination

Exposure to stereotypes, prejudice or discrimination based on gender, sexual identity, disability, ethnicity or other characteristics can leave deep psychological scars. Social stigma not only isolates a person, but can also trigger or exacerbate disorders such as anxiety, social anxiety and depression.

  • Social pressure and unrealistic expectations

The pressure to live up to unrealistic social standards and the constant comparison with others is another source of poor mental health. In a society that is often focused on image, success and productivity, constant comparison to unattainable ideals can cause significant stress, inadequacy, anxiety and feelings of personal failure, which negatively impacts self-esteem and psychological well-being.

3) Psychological and interpersonal factors

Psychological and interpersonal factors are another important aspect of our mental health. Below, we look at some of the most important ones.

  • Problems with self-esteem and self-perception

Difficulties with self-acceptance and self-esteem are often associated with feelings of inferiority and body image issues. In addition to emotional distress, this can lead to dysfunctional behaviour, difficulties in relationships, and vulnerability to disorders such as depression and anxiety. Excessively low self-esteem can also limit the ability to use one’s potential and make independent decisions. In some cases, self-esteem issues can contribute to the development of eating disorders.

  • Difficulties in relationships

Relationship difficulties can have a significant impact on our psychological well-being. These include difficulties in building and maintaining meaningful relationships, problematic family dynamics, toxic relationships or a lack of social support. These dynamics can have a negative impact on mental health, leading to isolation, loneliness, low self-esteem and problems such as anxiety and depression.

  • Chronic anxiety and worry

Persistent feelings of anxiety and worry can have a significant impact on our daily lives and undermine our mental health. Excessive anxiety, in addition to leading to emotional discomfort, can negatively impact our ability to make decisions, participate in activities, invest in our relationships, and more. Sometimes anxiety develops into a full-blown anxiety disorder, such as generalised anxiety disorder, panic disorder, social phobia, and others.

  • Personal traits

Certain personality traits can increase a person’s vulnerability to mental health problems. To give just a few examples, traits such as perfectionism, excessive self-criticism, or a tendency to be extremely sensitive to failure, rejection, or criticism can increase the risk of anxiety, depression, and other psychological disorders. Similarly, traits such as high impulsivity or irritability can lead to risky behaviour and problematic interpersonal dynamics.

4) Biological and medical factors

Another group of factors that play a key role in a person’s mental health are biological/medical factors. From medical conditions to genetic predisposition, these aspects can have a profound impact on both vulnerability to and ability to manage mental disorders.

  • State of health

Medical conditions, especially chronic conditions, add an extra layer of complexity to psychological well-being. Managing these conditions on a daily basis, worrying about one’s health and the limitations placed on one’s life can lead to stress and, in some cases, the development of anxiety and depression.

  • Genetic factors

It should be emphasised that genetics cannot fully determine mental health, but it can influence the predisposition to unhealthy conditions, which requires increased attention and, if possible, preventive interventions.

5) Previous psychological disorders

Having a psychological disorder can increase vulnerability to further mental health problems. For example, a person with an anxiety disorder may be more likely to develop depression.

It is crucial to address these risk factors through targeted interventions, which may include psychotherapy, social support and, if necessary, pharmacological intervention. A holistic approach, which considers the person as a whole and in their life context, is essential to promoting and maintaining mental health.

Let’s now take it a step further and see what we can do in practice to have and maintain good mental health. – Dushevnyjlekar.com

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