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Turn2Me understands the importance of Positive Mental Health but we also recognise that most of us will experience a disruption to our General Mental Health at some point during our lives. These disruptions can be sporadic, isolated or regular. Our capacity towards inner strength, ability to share when we feel low and innate resilience are important factors in managing your mental health.
What is Mental Health?
Mental health is a level of psychological well-being, or an absence of mental illness. It is the "psychological state of someone who is functioning at a satisfactory level of emotional and behavioural adjustment". From the perspective of positive psychology or holism, mental health may include an individual's ability to enjoy life, and create a balance between life activities and efforts to achieve psychological resilience.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mental health includes "subjective well-being, perceived self-efficacy, autonomy, competence, inter-generational dependence, and self-actualization of one's intellectual and emotional potential, among others". The WHO further states that the well-being of an individual is encompassed in the realization of their abilities, coping with normal stresses of life, productive work and contribution to their community. Cultural differences, subjective assessments, and competing professional theories all affect how "mental health" is defined. A widely accepted definition of health by mental health specialists is psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud's definition: the capacity "to work and to love". Although this definition is simple and true for many, it's too simplistic a definition for others as mental health, or at least positive mental health, is a complex, layered and interactive process of engagement, regular self-appraisal, self-belief, social interaction and purpose or meaning in one’s life.
It is normal and natural to feel down at times. Problems you may encounter might range from general everyday worries or low periods in your life, to more serious long-term conditions. One in four of us will experience a mental health difficulty in our lifetime. Everyone is different and how we respond to mental health difficulties can vary from person to person.
Wellbeing may be compromised when negative and painful emotions are extreme or very long-lasting and interfere with the person’s ability to function in daily life. For some people, it may be difficult to talk about mental health, but it can help to talk about how you are feeling. People you can talk to might include friends, family, an online counsellor or a GP.
What is Positive Mental Health?
Positive mental health is when you can realise your own abilities, cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully, and contribute to your community. Positive mental health is normally characterised by:
• Positive relationships
• Ability to deal constructively with negative feelings and emotions
• Connection with other people and community
• Ability to cope
Thanks to our friends in Mental Health Ireland for their contribution.