Home > Mental care actions > #6 Goodwill
Positive social relationships and creative activities promote better mental health.
Evidence in scientific literature indicates that goodwill act, positive social relationships, and creative activities improve mental wellness. A good support system for your emotional well-being is not just about friends and family. It includes creative activities like art, music, and writing.
 Umberson D, Montez JK. Social Relationships and Health: A Flashpoint for Health Policy. Journal of health and social behavior. 2010;51(Suppl):S54-S66. Link
 Hill EM., Griffiths FE, House T. Spreading of healthy mood in adolescent social networks. Proc. R. Soc. B 2015 August 19; 282: 20151180. Link
 Siedliecki SL, Good M. Effect of music on power, pain, depression and disability. Journal of Advanced Nursing. 2006;54: 553–562. Link
 Gussak D. The effectiveness of art therapy in reducing depression in prison populations. Int J Offender Ther Comp Criminol. 2007 Aug;51(4):444-60. Link
 Meekums B, Karkou V, Nelson EA. Dance movement therapy for depression. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2015 Feb 19;2:CD009895. Link
What you can do with this knowledge
- Say and do something nice to people. Give kind, warm, encouraging words to your friends, family, colleagues, and even complete strangers.
- Hang out with upbeat friends. Happy moods are infectious.
- Engage in creative activities like art, music, dance, drama, writing, poetry, craft works, gardening, cooking, and traveling.
Be careful with your exposure and involvement in online social relationships. Studies show that social media can have inadvertent but seriously negative effects on mental health.
- A good article on new studies regarding the benefits of having positive friends.
- A good overview of creative interventions used in psychotherapies.
- A New Yorker article on the negative effects of online social media.
- For further exploration, use the search keywords: creative therapy, social relationships health.
- Teens with upbeat friends may have better emotional health by
Nandini Mani: 2015. Link
- Creative Arts Therapy and Expressive Arts Therapy by
Cathy Malchiodi: 2014. Link
- How Facebook Makes Us Unhappy by Maria Konnikova: 2013. Link