6 Life-Changing Strategies to Boost Mood, Build Resilience and Increase Happiness while working in the fashion industry
6. Find purpose and meaning in life
Everyone derives meaning and purpose in different ways that involve doing things that benefit others, as well as yourself. You may think of it as a way to feel needed, feel good about yourself, a purpose that drives you on, or directly a reason to get out of bed in the morning. In biological terms, finding meaning and purpose is essential to brain health as it can help generate new cells and create new neural pathways in the brain. It can also strengthen your immune system, alleviate pain, relieve stress, and keep you motivated to pursue the other steps to better mental and emotional health. However, you derive meaning and purpose in life; it’s essential to do those things every day.
What gives you meaning and purpose?
Engaging work that gives meaning to yourself and others. Do things that challenge your creativity and make you feel productive, whether or not you get paid for it—things like gardening, drawing, writing, playing an instrument, or building something in your workshop.
Relationships. Spending quality time where you give yourself to people who matter to you, whether they're friends, grandkids, or elderly relatives, can support your health and theirs—and provide a sense of purpose.
Caring for a pet. Yes, pets are a responsibility, but caring for one makes you feel needed and loved. There's no love entirely as unconditional as the love a pet can give. Animals can also get you out of the house for exercise and expose you to new people and places.
Volunteering. Just as we're hard-wired to be social, we're also hard-wired to give to others. The meaning and purpose derived from helping others or the community can enrich and expand your life—and make you happier. There's no limit to the individual and group volunteer opportunities you can explore. Schools, churches, nonprofits, and charitable organisations of all sorts depend on volunteers for their survival.
Caregiving. Taking care of an ageing parent, a disabled spouse, or a child with a physical or mental illness is an act of kindness, love, and loyalty—and can be as rewarding and meaningful as it is challenging.
When to seek professional help
If you've made consistent efforts to improve your mental and emotional health and still aren’t functioning optimally at home, work, and in your relationships, it may be time to seek professional help. Following these self-help steps will always be beneficial, though. In fact, input from a caring professional can often help to motivate us to do more for ourselves that we’re able to do alone.
Take action, connect and speak up!
Authors: Melinda Smith, M.A., Robert Segal, M.A., Lawrence Robinson and Jeanne Segal, PhD.