What is mental health, and why is it so important?

Mark Aitken RN, Stakeholder Engagement Manager: Nurse & Midwife Support
The definition of mental health is often misunderstood. Nurse and Midwife Support Stakeholder Engagement Manager Mark explains why everyone should look after their mental health and wellbeing.

friends looking at sunset

The World Health Organization describes mental health as “a state of wellbeing in which every individual realises his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community.”

Mental health isn’t automatic. We all have to attend to good mental health. Sometimes, that means trying to change your perspective on your troubles: take a glass half full approach, rather than insist that the glass is half empty. Celebrate your life, the good times and what you have. Other times, you might need to acknowledge that the weight of your problems is too much to carry alone and reach out for help from a trusted friend or professional.

Tips for good mental health:

  • be informed ─ there are many resources to support you:
  • eat well
  • maintain good sleep hygiene
  • engage in physical activity
  • socialise
  • reduce drug and alcohol intake
  • set realistic goals
  • relax
  • change your self-talk
  • develop assertiveness skills
  • be kind to others
  • have fun, and
  • reach out if you need help.

If you have questions about mental health, we want to hear from you. Our business is to support nurses, midwives and students across Australia — no matter the issue. Check out our website or phone us on 1800 667 877. We are here 24/7.

Look after yourself and your colleagues.

Your health matters!

Best wishes
Mark Aitken RN
Stakeholder Engagement Manager