Let’s Talk Mental Wellness

Xperience Growthblogposts

US gymnast Simone Biles changed the conversation in the country this week. The Olympian switched the narrative from focusing on the competitions to talking about mental health.

When she decided to take herself out of the team competition and the all-round (the event to crown the best gymnast in the world) on the basis of her mental health, the world took notice. And the world started talking.

Many times when people think or talk about mental health, it’s in the context of mental illness. We say things like “I hope (s)he gets the help they need.” Clearly, help with an illness is needed and is a priority. Yet, when we hope that THEY get help, we distance ourselves from the conversation. And that makes sense… after all, we’re not the sick ones…

According to Johns Hopkins, 1 in 4 Americans are suffering from a diagnosable mental illness. That’s a staggering number! With over 330 million Americans, that is over 80 million people.

And… that also means 250 million people in our country don’t have a diagnosable mental illness. What about those people? Do we just sit back and thank our lucky stars that the mental health gods sprinkled pixie dust on us?? If we do, that would be unfortunate.

I’d like to suggest that we turn the page and put mental “wellness” into the mental health conversation. We do this already with physical health. Yes, we seek medical or professional help when our bodies are sick. We also focus on our nutrition and exercise to make sure our body is fit.

We know that healthy bodies are optimum for the activities that we want to do – playing with our kids, hobbies, energy in our workday and so on. It’s why health is a pillar in an Xperiential life. Without good health, we would be hard pressed to live life to its fullest. The majority of us believe that physical health includes optimization, not just free of illness, and it’s a key to greater performance and fulfillment in life.

If you were going to run a marathon, what would you do? First, you’d create a goal: complete the marathon or if you’re experienced, complete it at a set time. Then, you’d train, right? You’d find a successful training regimen online that takes you from where you are now to where you want to be on race day. Or, you’d find a local training group or coach to help mold you into the runner that you want to be. You’d push yourself to get into the shape needed to hit your marathon goal. On race day, you’d be ready for whatever the course throws your way because you are ready for a peak performance.

Let’s also make sure that our minds are ready for peak performance, too.

What if we treated our minds like it was a muscle? What might we do differently? We commonly work with a trainer in the gym or a nutritionist with our food. Let’s commit to doing the same for our minds. Find a professional that can be your guide to working out that “muscle” that sits on top of shoulders and between your ears.

What does an optimum mental wellness look like to you? There’s your goal. Now we train: get rid of what is weighing you down. Learn that you are in charge of your life, destiny and wellbeing. Build up the mental stamina to stay in control of your emotions and your energy. Create a “six pack” mindset (that will help you with your abs, too 😁). You’re now ready for the marathon of life.

When we prioritize our mental wellness along with our physical wellness, our true potential actually becomes more clear and within reach. Let’s commit to also talking about this!