Mental Hygiene: What It Is & 4 Ways to Take Care of It

Jordan Tarver
September 14, 2020

Each and everyone one of us deals with our own unique struggles. While these are difficult to overcome, focusing on our mental hygiene, or maintaining mental health through positive behaviors, can help us navigate these challenges and guide us to a worry-free life. There are several different proactive behaviors you can utilize, but I've always relied on meditation, positivity, and gratitude to guide me on my mental health journey.

What Is Mental Hygiene?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, mental hygiene is the "science of maintaining mental health." But that definition is not fun, so let's spice it up a notch. Mental hygiene is the upkeep of our minds, which allows us to achieve a higher quality of living. Understanding the definition of mental hygiene is one thing, but knowing how to take care for your mental hygiene will help you along your journey of self-improvement.

How to Take Care of Your Mental Hygiene

Navigating a stress-free life is challenging but not impossible. Most of the times it comes down to our mental health and mindset. By using different proactive positive behaviors you can prepare yourself to overcome any challenge thrown your way. I have a mental toolbox of different tactics and techniques I use to focus on my mental hygiene, which I've listed below.

1. Meditate

Meditation, although challenging in the beginning, can slowly become a life-changing practice. Whether you do a guided or silent meditation, or take a course through a group like Art of Living, you can start to invited easy and calmness into your life. During these quiet moments, you'll have an opportunity to feel a sense of refreshment, which allows you to call in positive thinking. 

While meditation doesn't turn out to be a fit for everyone, I believe it's worth trying if you haven't yet. I turned to meditation three years ago when I was feeling lost and worried; it changed my life, and continues to do so every time I sit down to close my eyes, Meditation is a great first step in practicing and mastering your mental hygiene as it is something that only requires a minimal amount of time per day.

2. Focus On Positivity

Positivity and positive thinking is my bread and butter; it's one principle of my living code. Leading a life fueled my positivity not only opens up your world and heart, but it's also a handy way to maintain your mental hygiene. The more we feed our minds with positive thoughts, the more room we create to develop a bulletproof mindset.

Positivity comes down to your thoughts and actions. It tends to serve as a way to dictate the reality around you. As stated by Steve Maxwell in an interview with Joe Rogan, "Your current reality is based on the sum total of your positive and negative thoughts. The vibe you put out is the vibe you attract." Knowing that, are you ready to use positivity as a guide in your mental health and mental hygiene journey?

3. Practice Gratitude

Gratitude, or being grateful, is simply being ready to show appreciation and to return kindness. Practicing gratitude is a crucial piece of not only your mental hygiene, but your journey of self-improvement, too. You can practice gratitude by making a list of things you're grateful for, telling people you're grateful for them, or just becoming aware of the aspects of life you appreciate.

At the end of the day, gratitude makes us feel all-round damn good. If you choose to avoid practicing gratitude, then you run the risk of damaging your emotions, mental health, and mindset. From appreciating the small things to the most important, gratitude provides happiness within the body and mind.

4. Rely On Positive Affirmations

Positive affirmations are positive statements that can help you overcome negative thoughts, self-sabotaging actions, or allow you to see greatness in your own life. Think of it this way, positive affirmations are statements that motivate you and serve as a cheerleader. For instance, you could say, "I am worthy," or "I am successful."

Practicing positive affirmations frequently can program and wire your brain to think in this way, allowing you to master your mental hygiene. As a practice, I write down positive affirmations every morning in my journal. A simple exercise like this gives you a resource to lean into if you're going through a troubling time or trying to overcome a challenge in your life.

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Bottom Line

By focusing on mastering our mental hygiene through these four tips, we can promote a healthier mind and life. With this healthy mind, we can directly improve the quality of life we live and the life of those around us. What could be better than that? To be honest, I am not really sure.

What are some of your tactics to maintaining your mental health and hygiene? Let me know in the comments below!


Jordan Tarver is a lead editor at Forbes, a keynote speaker, and the bestselling author of You Deserve This Sh!t.
He’s transformed over 30,000 lives through his book, amassed more than 200,000 devoted followers, and garnered over 60 million views online. Jordan is on a mission to empower people and organizations to unlock exponential growth and expansive possibilities.

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