When Associate Professor of Marketing Myla Bui was called a Negative Nancy as an undergraduate, she immediately felt shame. She asked herself why she was being punished for verbalizing how she felt. Although a painful moment, this was a turning point in Bui’s life. Being called a Negative Nancy sparked her interest in exploring the outcomes associated with negative emotions.
It is no secret that mental health is one of the biggest issues affecting people from all corners of the world. According to World Economic Forum, 275 million people suffer from anxiety disorders worldwide.
“Keeping silent has literally become deadly for our society,” said Bui. “This year of 2020 has done us a favor in highlighting how social-cultural stigmas such as anxiety, stress, depression and suicide are topics that need to become normative discussion in our culture.”
Bui shared her extensive research surrounding mental health in "Let’s Talk: Breaking the Silent Taboo of Mental Health.” The speaker event took place on Nov. 17 as part of the Impact Insights Webinar Series from the College of Business Administration.
Through her research, Bui has found several effective strategies to combat mental health issues. Here are the top five pieces of advice I took away from attending Bui’s webinar.
Practice positive activities
Positive activities can increase healthy thoughts and behaviors. Bui mentioned the benefits of expressing gratitude, performing acts of kindness, cultivating strengths, visualizing the future and meditating.
Foster good habits
Habits must be formed in a stable context, which can be achieved through repetition. Bui recommends stacking habits. She offered up the example of flossing immediately after brushing teeth as the latter is already an established habit.
Manifestation is a valuable tool for working toward goals. Making a vision board is advantageous as images provide you with a taste of the future. According to Bui, these vision boards must be positive, reflect something in the future and be completely yours.
Create a healthy environment
We have the power to impact ourselves consciously through altering our environments in minor ways. Bui buys small dining plates to encourage healthy portion sizes. She also keeps a bowl of fresh fruit on her counter so it is easily accessible.
Find the silver linings
Resilient people are able to cope more effectively during hardships by utilizing humor, relaxation techniques and optimistic thinking. Even when you find yourself in a difficult situation, try to find a silver lining. There is always a lesson to be learned in dark times.
This is the opinion of Francesca Bermudez, a sophomore journalism major from Saratoga, California. Tweet comments to @LALoyolan or email email@example.com.