How Our Mental Health Affects Our Well-being

Written by: Alicia Yuhas, CFW Health Fitness Program Manager

Diverse group sitting on floor smiling

The definition of well-being is “a good or satisfactory condition of existence; a state characterized by health, happiness, and prosperity; welfare”. Psychiatrist and Founder of The Berkeley Well-being Institute, Tchiki Davis, Ph.D, adds “well-being includes having good mental health, high life satisfaction, a sense of meaning or purpose, and ability to manage stress”.

According to The World Health Organization, overall health includes the three pillars of physical, mental, and social well-being. Statistics indicate that one in five adults have a mental illness in any given year. There are a wide range of mental illnesses including anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and addictive behaviors. Consequences of mental illness affect mood, thinking, and behavior. If you are in a bad mood, filled with negative thoughts, or engaged in unhealthy behaviors, your overall well-being will suffer.

While it is critical to consult a professional to treat mental illness, sharing your thoughts and feelings with others can improve your mood and outlook. Participating in a physical activity while socializing with colleagues, friends, or family can address all three pillars of health. Consider activities that allow participants to interact such as hiking, group exercise, various sports, running, or walking.

One of my favorite activities for overall well-being is my weekly run with “the girls”. The miles pass much easier as we share our ups and downs and details about our lives. This is a great physical, social, and mental outlet, and I am always in a better mood afterward. With their support, many of “life’s problems” are solved by the end of the run. And our motto is “what happens on the run, stays on the run!”

This month, our content writers share expert tips for improving mental health and well-being.

Want more? Click on the links below for more health and fit tips from CFW professionals.