Your guide to a healthy mind

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What the research says


Have you ever received a negative comment from someone, and it completely caught you off guard? Perhaps they didn't mean any offense by it, but such comments can often weigh us down. The feelings produced by ruminating on these comments can cause us to feel badly about ourselves and can impact our mental wellbeing. Research shows that spending time outside can help to interrupt the tendency to ruminate, thus improving our mental health [1]


It is widely understood that physical activity provides us with many benefits to our physical wellbeing, such as an improvement in sleep, a reduction in cholesterol, and boost in energy, to name a few. It is not as widely understood, however, that good physical fitness can improve our mental fitness. Research shows that exercise can help alleviate negative moods and low self-esteem, as well as improve symptoms for people who suffer from anxiety and depression [2]


In the age of social media, we can message people we haven't seen since kindergarten, we can link with colleagues we only met once, and we can even meet our future spouse at the swipe of a screen. In a world where it is easier than ever before to connect with people, why is it that we feel lonelier than ever before? Research shows us that it is not the accessibility and quantity of relationships that maters, but rather it is the quality of the connection that improves mental wellbeing [3]

  1. Bratman, G., Hamilton, J., Hahn, K., Daily, G., Gross, J. (2015) ‘Nature experience reduces rumination and subgenual prefrontal cortex activation’, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, vol. 112, no. 28, pp. 8567 - 8572 [Online]. Available at https://www.pnas.org/content/early/2015/06/23/1510459112 (Accessed 4 August 2019).

  2. Sharma, A., Madaan, V., Petty, F. (2006) ‘Exercise for Mental Health’, The Primary Care Companion to the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, vol. 8, no. 2, pp. 106 [Online]. Available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1470658/ (Accessed 4 August 2019).

  3. Umberson, D., Montez, J. (2010) ‘Social Relationships and Health: A Flashpoint for Health Policy’, Journal of Health and Social Behaviour, vol. 51, pp. 54 - 66 [Online]. Available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3150158/ (Accessed 4 August 2019).