What is Mental Health?


There are countless definitions of mental health, and some are accurate.  One is “Having the ability to think, act, and behave appropriately in all situations, whether socially or at home.  It is the ability to acquire a satisfactory balance in relationships and to be emotionally stable. ”

Mental health involves the willingness and the ability of each person to enjoy what they have.  It is being able to rejoice and delight in one’s own existence.  Mental health means to feel satisfied, happy, and at peace and to enjoy everything that life brings.

But how can we achieve good mental health and be peaceful, happy, and healthy?  Mental health clinicians utilize a wide variety of techniques, therapies, and activities to help people feel better.  Singing, painting, poetry, writing, dance, music, and any expression of art are just some of the activities that can help us become a better person and increase our internal knowledge.  Talking to someone you trust can eliminate disturbing memories and promote good mental health; this is called catharsis.

There are several characteristics of individuals who possess good mental health.

• Knows his/her goals and aspirations

• Accepts responsibility for his/her actions

• Develops skills to solve daily life problems

• Is open to new challenges and experiences

• Clearly recognizes his/her capabilities and limitations

• Outlines achievable goals

• Adjusts and adapts to situations that cannot be changed

• Socializes with positive and authentic individuals

It is important to remember that we all go through difficulties in life and that it is almost impossible to possess these characteristics all the time.  Having problems in life and not being able to solve them do not equate to having a “mental illness.”

The vast majority of human beings have to interact with other people, usually with our own family.  To have a healthy balance in our relationships is extremely important to enjoy good mental health.

Some of the characteristics possessed by a person with a satisfactory level of mental health when interacting with others are outlined below:

• Feels comfortable in his/her relationships

• Is fair and reasonable with family members

• Can trust and inspire others

• Shows respect and empathy for others

• Does not impose beliefs and values on others

• Feels an important part of the social groups to which he/she belongs

These are just some of the characteristics and qualities of people who enjoy good mental health.  However, it is important to note that I am talking about normal situations of everyday life.  There are people who suffer from psychiatric illnesses due to physiological disorders or the failure of certain chemicals in the brain.  In these cases, pharmacological treatment is necessary to treat their condition.  In many cases, such treatment can lead to a healthier way of living.

If you sense that you are having difficulties experiencing optimal mental health, consult a professional mental health specialist in your community.

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