Although Australia is one of the more “modern” and “advanced” countries in the world, our culture still has a huge racism problem. This stretches to include everything from casual racism to obvious racial discrimination within many workplaces.
Unfortunately, racial discrimination can have severe impacts on people’s mental health. If you’ve ever suffered such problems, you may have encountered mental illnesses as a result.
And although you should always take steps to ensure racial discrimination is eliminated from your workplace – including seeking legal advice if necessary – it’s also important to keep yourself healthy.
To help you do this, we’ve put together the following guide of five easy ways to improve your mental health and maintain a positive state of mind.
- Do Something You Enjoy
If you feel like your mental health is suffering as a result of discrimination (or anything else), you may need to just sit back and relax for a while. One of the best ways to return yourself to a positive state of mind is to spend time doing things you enjoy.
For example, if you love the ocean, you might consider getting out for regular walks, fishing, diving or even surfing if you’re an athletic type. It’s also a well-known fact that simply being out in nature is good for your mental health.
- Look After Your Body
Many people don’t realise just how closely mental and physical health are linked. If your mental health is declining, you may need to adjust your diet and other habits. Make sure you’re drinking plenty of water, eat good food wherever possible and avoid alcohol and cigarettes.
- Set Short and Long-Term Goals
If you feel like you’re lacking self-worth and/or a sense of purpose, it might be time to begin setting some life goals. Sit down with a pen and paper and identify a few things you want to achieve over the coming months and years. Think about both personal and professional goals. Ultimately, having something to work towards will help you maintain a positive state of mind.
- Network With Friends and Like-Minded People
Although racial discrimination is more common than it should be, there are plenty of accepting people out there. Rather than spending time with the people who don’t value you, consider relaxing with friends and networking with other like-minded people.
- Practice Stress Relief and Relaxation
Many people experience high stress and anxiety levels when they’re suffering from racial discrimination. There are numerous strategies you could adopt to deal with these, including things like meditation, positive imagery and deep breathing. Consider getting a relaxation massage, and spend time visualising exactly what you hope to achieve over the coming weeks.
Although it can be easy to let your mental health slide and to fall into a trap of self-pity and loathing, it’s important not to. In this guide, we’ve looked at five strategies for overcoming the negative mental effects of racial discrimination in the workplace. Remember, though, you need to deal with the cause of the problem as well, not just the negative health effects.