The Florida Mental Health Counselors Association announces that May is Mental Health Awareness Month and May 1-8, 2012, is Mental Health Counseling Week. Today, we’d like to focus on ways to encourage good mental health in the home.
Our home life is the area in which our mental health is most affected. The way we interact with our family members has a powerful effect on our quality of life in general. It can make us feel warm and safe, or anxious and depressed.
In today’s hard economic times, more families are under stress than ever. The result, if not handled well, can result in our support system being under threat at a time when we need it the most. How can we promote an emotionally healthy home?
According to detailed research by Dr. John Gottman’s team at the University of Washington, the single- most toxic factor to good mental health in relationships is a sense of not feeling respected.
So when we disagree, do we talk down to our spouse or child, do we dismiss their points without comment, do we criticize them for holding different views? These all-too-common occurrences easily lead to an atmosphere of anger, alienation and compromised mental health for all. Home becomes another problem and not the answer.
It’s hard to pause before speaking, soften our tone of voice and be willing to listen as well as being heard, but the rewards are great. The Florida Mental Health Counselors Association reminds you that mental health is a part of your world!