How do I Get Stronger Mentally?

Research has stated that your mental strength plays a more important role than anything else for achieving your goals in health, business and life. You might not have an effect on the genes you were birthed with, but you can do a lot to develop your mental strength.

Have you wondered what makes someone excellent at what they do? Or a good leader? Why do some people excel at their goals while others fail?

We are all humans with one head, aren’t we all?

Mental Strength or Mental Health?

A lot of times, these two terms have been misunderstood. However, there is a clear difference between mental strength and mental health.

Mental health, defined by the World Health Organisation (WHO) is “a state of well-being in which the individual realizes his or her abilities, can cope with the normal stresses of life, work productively and fruitfully, and can contribute to his/her community”.

Read: Why Mental Health is a Big Deal

“Mental strength is the capacity of an individual to deal effectively with stressors, pressures, and challenges. It is also the high performance to the best of your ability, irrespective of the circumstances you find yourself”.

Clough, 2002.

Mental health and mental strength can be likened to physical strength and physical health. We all can be healthy, or better still, some of us are perfectly healthy but it’s no news that our physical strength differs greatly.

What is Mental Strength?

Mental strength is the ability to cope with negative emotions in a healthy way. It’s about understanding your emotions, knowing when to engage with them and when to take few steps back.

The ability to continue moving when you are feeling scared, fearful or unenthused is a true display of mental strength.

Tough times never last, tough people do.

3 phases of Mental Strength

Psychiatrists say that the way you think affects how you feel, and how you feel in turn affects how you behave. The cognitive triad is a mind-body connection, it’s a chain that links our thoughts, emotions and behaviour.

There are evident stages of growth. Mental strength is weighed in 3 capacities:

  • Thinking
  • Feeling
  • Action

6 Steps to Getting Stronger Mentally

Positive psychology infers that there are 4 C’s of mental toughness according to Turner 2017.

Control, commitment, challenge, confidence are the 4 C’s of mental toughness, but I added 2 extra tips.

1. Gain control of your emotions

The ability to maneuver the control switch means you are comfortable in your skin and have a great sense of who you are and who you are growing to be. You are less distracted by the happenstances of life. You are an activator and a major actor in your own life.

2. Stay committed

This has to do with your reliability. Set smart goals, prioritize them, stick to routines, execute those goals. In the end, offer yourself due appraisals.

3. Identification of challenges

This is the part that deals with your driving power and adaptability strength.

In all cases, view challenges, change and adversity as opportunities rather than threats. This mindset makes you flexible when dealing with difficult situations.

4. Confidence

Be confident in yourself! Believe that you are productive enough. Accept that there might be setbacks, but never forget that you are capable to do anything.

5. Engage in exercises

If you are willing to stay physically strong and fit, you engage in exercises to build muscles – just like development of mental strength. Building mental strength may, in turn, also improve your mental health.

Engage in cognitive, emotional and behavioural exercises. They make you perform at your peak.

6. Worry less

You tend to stress your mental capacity when you worry. You overthink and wear out.

Conclusion

Life will always happen, but when it shows up, let it be for you and not to you.

If it takes writing about your emotions to lessen the weight, you can journal it. Learn to label your feelings and engage in positive activities. Having a high quotient of mental strength will help anyone go a long way.

Read: Maintaining Mental Health as a Teenager


How do you manage your mental health? Care to share with me?


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