By Saikat Kumar Basu 

Many may not know that 10th of October 2022 is the World Mental Health Day! We know ourselves how sound is our mental health, everyone looks at the physical health (body health). 

 Its no surprise, few have no idea that one should take care of their mental health too. Unfortunately though we pay very little attention to our mental health and as a consequence we are observing an epic rise of mental diseases, syndromes and disorders impacting both our social and family life as well putting stress on the existing medical infrastructure. Most under developed and developing countries like India do not have bare minimal infrastructure in dealing with the challenges of mental health related issues. We do not have enough qualified and experienced psychiatrist, psychologists, councillors, mental health trained nurses or medical personnel and staff to tackle the challenges of both patients and would be patients at all. 
For past two years we have gone through the global pandemic and many got impacted due to this due to acute isolation for days. Not only did we experience social, cultural, economic and physical challenges; but we have been also severely impacted emotionally too. This has been a catastrophic challenging time for all of us; more so for our numerous helpless senior citizens and countless babies and young children who  lost their lives due to the COVID-19 pandemic around the globe. Although now we do see the shift of the COVID-19 infection graph going downhill; but the cases of mental health issues have taken an accelerated growth across the planet as a long term impact of this devastating pandemic. This has affected many people irrespective of the age and gender. And I am sure many of us would have understood and learnt a lesson on mental health.
Psychologists and many scientists have cautioned us during the pandemic on the long term impacts of the human mental health irrespective of developed, developing and under developed nations. But we have failed to take any appropriate measures as we were focused heavily on physical diseases and symptoms and treating them successfully. But effective treatment of mental health is still a far reaching goal that we need to achieve across the globe. 
No doubt the pandemic has brought many good changes and people started cultiviating few good habits. In order to keep our mental helth and sustain it life long, one should engage their mind always in positive activities. We should always be in touch with other positive human beings and try to establish our own friend or support circle to take care of one another. Hence it is important for us from now on to enchance our skills in bettering our ability to communicate and interact with other people even outside our comfort zone. It is very important that we take out our time to meet and greet other people physically; and not just virtually. It is also important to know your close and distant family members and our neighbours. We have to develop the habit to start wishing others or at least simply smile at people that we come across throughout the day. We should not hesitate and apprehend in helping people at any time. We will be amazed to know how happy we are internally for that purpose. Please remember that you are part of this society-not “you are the only important being in the society”. Look for reaching out to others; without expecting others to reach you instantaneously whenever you need them. Change the focus of your life from being either ‘I’ or ‘me’ or ‘myself’ centric to be ‘our’ and ‘we’ centric. This will rapidly transform your mental make up from negativity to positivity instantly. Live your life with your full attention, love and care for yourself as well as others. You will see a wotrkd of difference around you. 
Shower unconditional love and affection to others as people simply do not just wants our money or wealth or share the glory and glamour of our social prestige and security, but they need our empathy in the very true sense of the term. We have to put our ego behind and learn to calm our mind. It is not easy but not impossible either. A daily habit of active life that includes some free hand exercises, yoga, pranayam and brisk walking can make a positive change for your mental health if you are suffering from anxiety, depression, frustrations, anger, emotional outbursts, short temper, irritability and melancholy. A daily cycle of meditation at least for 5 minutes in the morning when you get up or before you go to sleep for six months can start showing positive impacts on your mental health. Try and develop a regular life style with food low in carbohydrates but rich in seasonal fruits and green leafy vegetables. Avoid too much addition to different tobacco products, hard and soft drinks, tea and coffee or addiction to TV, smartphones and laptops. Instead pick up reading books as a habit. It will help you sleep better. Don’t push your normal biological cycles and sipping water throughout the day to keep you hydrated will certainly add to your positive mental health. Outside your daily chores abs profession, try picking a hobby that suits your likings and temperament. It could be anything like collecting stamps, postcards, coins and currencies to watching good movies, reading quality books, traveling, or any kind of sports or writing diary, poems, stories or novels, practising drawing, joining arts and crafts or drama workshop; anything that is positive, creative and keeps you engaged. It will certainly vary from one individual to another. But at the end you will joys abs satisfaction that simply money can’t buy for you. You can always visit a doctor to get anti-depressant drug prescriptions; but you can always be your own physician. Guide yourself towards positive thoughts, Pisi prove activities, positive companions and positive thoughts, you could keep your tentative mental health issues at bay. 
We need to learn how to lead a Happy Life, and not just a rich life. Richness does not guarantee happiness. It could not be simply bought with your social, political and economic power. It is a rare resource that has to be raised, developed and established internally. We need to learn to train ourselves to develop a happy and sound mind. For that we have to be realistic in life and need to cut down on our ever increasing unnecessary as well as unrealistic demands, lust, need, thrust or focus on gathering power, prestige and materialistic wealth.  We need to understand that we are human being! By doing so we are taking care of our mental health as well as the surroundings-at large the society!  Life is always beautiful and it all depends upon the choices we make and the path of life that we wish to explore. Wish you all a very happy and successful World Mental Health. Let peace be your destiny.