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7 Bad Habits That Affect Your Mental Health

Bad habits interrupt your life and prevent you from accomplishing your goals. They can jeopardize your health both mentally and physically. Not only are they wasting your time and energy, but sometimes we may not even be aware we are doing some of them as they become so natural.

A lot of our perception and mindset of things is psychological. Therefore, our train of thought, habits and what we take part in play a big part in how we feel mentally.

Many habits can both positively and negatively impact our mental health. This blog is going to look at 7 bad habits that will impact us negatively. We have already previously done a blog that covers positive habits to help to keep a positive mindset. (Keeping positive)

7 Bad Habits That Affect Your Mental Health

We often develop habits and preferences of ways to do things, which unintentionally can impact our mental health.

Bad habits that affect your mental health:

  • Perfectionism

  • Poor posture

  • Guilt

  • Lack of Exercise

  • Overuse of Social Media

  • Regret

  • Failure mindset

There are many more bad habits that we can develop that will negatively impact our mental health, however, the above ones are the most common. Having any of the above habits can lead to poor mental health as you often become unmotivated. You become in the habit of doing negative things which leads to a negative train of thought. As mentioned, a lot of the time mental health is psychological therefore if you are having negative trains of thought you reflect that onto your mental health.

For example, someone may develop a habit of drinking or taking part in drugs every evening due to stress, leading to developing an addiction, which will also be covered in a later blog.


Can Bad Mental Health Lead To Developing Bad Habits?

Yes! It most certainly can. If you have any bad habits you really need to look at your mental health. Unfortunately, there is still some associated stigma with having poor mental health. Statements such as “it is all in your head” or “pull yourself together” can lead to self-hate. This never-ending circle of negative feelings and thoughts can then lead to people using alcohol and/or drugs, getting into debt, isolation and even violence to express their self-hatred.

The stress of overwhelming emotions and self-blame can tip someone to take part in things they may not normally do. When struggling with poor mental health for a while people then begin to look for a way out, a way to feel a bit of ease from time to time, which can often lead to negative coping strategies and habits.

There have been studies to show that many coping mechanisms and symptoms of a few mental illnesses are to overspend. This can occur during manic episodes with mental illnesses such as; Bipolar, BPD (Borderline personality disorder) and anxiety.

Why Do We Develop Bad Habits?

As mentioned our bad habits are often coping mechanisms for our feelings and emotions. So we often have to try and be in touch with ourselves to understand what each habit is trying to help with.

For example, some habits may lead to us feeling more connected like checking our emails or social media first thing in the morning, however, even this simple habit can destroy productively, and increase anxiety always remember that social media does not always present things truly.

Another example would be, staying in a relationship that is not good for you, or your emotional needs. Or developing the habit of biting your nails or even hair pulling due to stress.


How Do You Get Rid Of Bad Mental Health Habits?

Bad habits provide some type of benefit in your life, it's very difficult to simply eliminate them. (This is why advice like “just stop doing it” rarely works.) Instead, you need to replace a bad habit with a new habit that provides a similar benefit, which is always easier said than done.

As mentioned above you have to understand what that habit is trying to help with. Is it trying to help an emotional need or a physical need? Once you have found out what your subconscious is trying to help you with, then you can then try to help develop a healthier habit instead. Also, another way to help remove bad habits from your life is by recognising your triggers. By recognising your triggers you are almost one step ahead of yourself making it easier to avoid stress where you can.

For example, if you smoke, drink or do drugs due to stress, you could maybe try getting some fresh air to step outside and take deep breaths.

So therefore the best way to try to eliminate bad habits is but swapping them out for healthier ones. Have a read of this blog 5 steps to change your thinking to more positive, to have a read click here. (CBT Blog)

If you feel you would like a better insight into the ongoing mental health problems, we do offer an online Mental Health First Aid course.

Provided by an instructor qualified under Mental Health First Aid England, allowing yourself to become a qualified Mental Health First Aider.

For further information Email:

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About Me

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I am a multi-award-winning women's healthcare advocate.


I am extremely passionate about women's healthcare and mental health.

Did you know that - You are more likely to meet someone about to attempt suicide than about to have a heart attack? Everyone should know what to do.


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