It isn’t easy to have a balanced life. School, work, and house chores can be tiring, and you still have to make time for your friends. However, it’s also important to make time for yourself. Hobbies are a great way to get the necessary “me” time and de-stress. Not only that, but they also help maintain positive mental health.
Let’s take a look at what specific activities you can take up to promote mental wellness.
When life gets too loud, reading is a great way to get quiet time. For a moment, everything is about you and the book. It provides you with a sense of calmness and tranquility.
Reading is great for your mental health as it strengthens your mental capacity. Reading stimulates your brain, improves your memory, and even helps with creativity and imagination. It makes you think as you use your mind to turn the words into scenes in your head.
Similarly, reading can help you understand your emotions better. It’s true that there is wisdom in books. You get to read about and learn from the experiences of other people. After this, you can apply what you have learned from them in your own life.
Put on those dancing shoes because this activity helps make you happier in life. Dancing can also be a form of release as it converts stress into movement and translates emotions to match the dance.
Dancing also keeps your mind healthy. A neuroscientist at Columbia University came up with a theory that dancing creates a “pleasure double play.” First, the music played stimulates the rewards center in the brain. Second, the physical act of dancing then activates our motor and sensory circuits. When dancing, you activate parts of your brain that are responsible for coordination, control, and balance. These all keep your mind active.
Additionally, dancing has always been a social activity. Dancing is used to get to know acquaintances at parties, celebrate achievements, and even court a lover. Thus, dancing can help us connect with others. Given that humans are social beings, this can provide us with much-needed socialization with friends and like-minded individuals.
Running And Walking
When you go outside early in the morning, it isn’t uncommon to see people jogging around the neighborhood or the park. It isn’t just good for your lungs and heart; it’s also good for your brain.
Because running requires you to get out of the house, exposure to the outdoors helps rid the risk of depression and anxiety. Exposure to the sun gets you vitamin D, which helps fight off seasonal depression. In a Stanford study, researchers found that those who took walks in forested areas would show happier emotions because there is reduced activity in the area of the brain that connects to negative feelings, in contrast to those who spent time in urban areas.
Take a break from selfies and point that camera elsewhere. Photography is a hobby that boosts creativity as well as your mental well-being. Looking through the lens of a camera challenges you to view things differently. Frame the world in a certain way, and you’ll see that it’s not as bleak as everyone says.
Reading, dancing, running, and taking photographs are just a few of those hobbies that are good for you. These not only lift your mood but also work on a neurological level.
There are other activities out there that can also contribute to positive mental health. So get out there and take up a hobby. You never know: it could be the key to unlocking greater happiness in your life.