Mental health refers to one’s emotional, psychological and social well-being. One in 5 Americans may experience a mental health condition each year. It affects everything from our thoughts and actions to how we communicate with those around us. Like physical health, it is essential to your overall health and quality of life.

This Mental Health Awareness Month, we’re sharing four quick tips to help you look after your mental health.

1. Set realistic goals

Set realistic goals, professionally, personally or academically. Setting realistic goals can keep you from getting overwhelmed, frustrated and defeated while promoting self-satisfaction, self-worth and accomplishment. Write down your goals along with the steps necessary to reach them. Avoid over-scheduling yourself and review your progress often.

2. Make good people connections

Regular interaction with positive, supportive family members and friends promotes better mental health. Seek out opportunities or activities that foster new connections, such as classes, clubs or support groups.

3. Change things up

Routines help to keep us efficient and on task, but they can become tedious. Keep things fresh by exploring alternate routes to work or when walking/biking. Try new restaurants and social venues. Give your home office a makeover or invest in new fitness gear.

4. Work with a health coach

Health coaching is not limited to nutrition and exercise topics. Health coaches can work with you to improve sleep, manage stress levels and replace unhealthy coping mechanisms with positive, healthy ones. Labcorp’s telephonic health coaches are certified in Mental Health First Aid and can make appropriate referrals, if necessary.

Mental health at work matters

Workplace wellness programs and initiatives are not new, but they’ve gotten more attention since the pandemic. Did you know:

  • One survey found that 80% of respondents stated they would seek out workplaces that strongly support mental health when looking for future job opportunities

If your workplace offers supportive services like health coaching through a partner like Labcorp, consider seeking out and utilizing these valuable resources. If you are having a mental health challenge or simply want to take steps to prioritize your mental health, contact your Employee Assistance Program (EAP) representative, if available.