Mens sana in corpore sano-this is a word I learnt way back when I was in primary school. Coming from a staunch catholic family it was only natural for my mother to take her children to catholic schools, and this is where I learnt this word.
My former headmistress was a nun but this could not deter her to excel in other fields including sports. Sr. Mwasi could run and swim. She was my teacher but also my good friend. One day when she removed her veil to swim I asked her if it was allowed to do so, and that is when she quoted this word-Mens sana in corpore sano and went on to explain why she needed to take a rest from other things because she had so much responsibilities and that they were weighing her down.
So the only thing for her to do is to swim so that she can relax her mind, not only to lead a healthy life-but also be able to perform her duties better. From there on she became my swimming companion-we swam every Tuesday.
Life can take its toll on somebody’s mind and body and that is when you hear one is having a nervous breakdown. My own brother was once admitted in hospital for a week because of fatigue, he had so much on his mind and therefore could not do anything even as much as eating, which resulted into poor health.
Psychological studies show that our minds and bodies are strongly linked. As your mental health declines, your physical health can wear down, and if your physical health declines, it can make you feel mentally down, but a positive outlook can help keep you healthy. The kind of life that we now lead is full of stress; but for one to be able to improve on the quality of your everyday life, is by building the skills of resilience which will help one adapt to stress and bounce back from life’s most difficult times.
A friend of mine was going through a very difficult period in her life, and she could not think straight, she could not work, she could not eat, she was not happy; and eventually this mental breakdown made her become very sick. Resilience isn’t something we are born with – it is something you can learn over time. Resilient people are people with strong emotional well-being who have healthy relationships with people and an optimistic outlook. Optimism and good relationships both have been shown to improve health and longevity.
It is important to pay attention to what your body is telling you about the state of your mind. If you’re getting tension headaches, for example, your body may be telling you that you need help dealing with whatever is on your mind. Death, divorce, job loss, chronic illness - these situations can bring both tremendous stress and distress into your life. But even daily stressors - the kind you think you can handle - can eventually overwhelm you, throwing your life out of balance and affecting both your psychological and your physical health.
Life is hard on everyone even to the ones that we think they have it all, deep down they are missing something. It is therefore unto us to make sure that we have a sound mind in a sound body to be able to live a healthy life.