Mental health is a topic that is coming more and more into the contemporary focal point. Emotions that affect us negatively are both pervasive and persistent in the lives of individuals everywhere; we all feel sad, just as we all feel happy.  

In both myself, as well as others, who I have seen come out of a place of sadness or depression in a positive way, there has been one notable trend: the changes they made in either their lives, mindsets, or both, ultimately came not from external sources, but from themselves.  

Self-help books, guided meditations, even advice from friends . . . these activities alone are not enough to create positive change in your own life.  That is not to say that one of these might not spark some epiphanic alteration in perspective.  It can.  However, that shift in perspective ultimately comes from you, from how you are affected by these experiences.  
What I mean to say is simply that bettering one’s mental health is not a set process.  Nobody can tell you that if you do x, y, and z, your life will definitely get better. I like that you explain the idea that doing x, y, and z may not make one’s life perfect. Listen to the advice of friends and family, research mental health, meditate, be mindful, and anything else that might help you on your journey, but always understand that in the end, we are the ones who have the power to change our own mindsets, our own perspectives, and our own futures. 

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Baker Fox is a Sophomore at Georgetown University studying English, Philosophy, and Psychology. Baker has been engaged in service since a young age, volunteering at special needs orphanages in China over the course of fourteen summers. He hopes to use writing as a means to inspire people to take action and help those in need, both in their own respective communities and in the broader world. In his free time Baker enjoys playing soccer and hockey, reading/writing fiction and poetry, and playing the guitar and piano.

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