Messy breakups, too little money to pay bills, unexpected illnesses and other tribulations that contribute to anguish usually come to mind when the words `mental health' are uttered. With the observance, this October 10 of World Mental health day, now is a good time as any to highlight the importance of being mentally fit and attuned to issues.

Many health experts will agree that there is still much more that needs to be done to give mental well-being the attention it deserves.

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It pays that celebrities like Prince William, Kate Middleton, and Prince Harry have been actively campaigning to dispel the stigma and negative attitudes surrounding mental states. It is noteworthy to see the royal family’s interactions, and meet-up with workers in health professions across the UK -- this World Mental Health Day -- to commend them for working towards a noble cause.

Impact on global economy

The statistics on mental disorders is alarmingly high.

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A recent WHO-led study estimated that Depression And Anxiety disorders amount to costs reaching as high as $1 trillion each year in lost productivity. Based on a poll of 5,500 UK adults online, two-thirds acknowledged knowing somebody suffering from mental illness. Another takeaway message is that individually, Britons are aware of mental disorders and those who do seek help/treatment.

Realizing that mental conditions like depression and anxiety are real and that they may affect people in your circle of friends or family can be a good start in bringing down the walls of prejudice and biases.

Nowadays, an increasing number of companies have also set up programs and activities to promote not just physical but also mental and emotional well-being.

The best workplaces are those that lend full support to employees’ growth, and that includes recognizing the telltale signs of mental distress and counteracting them with the right measures. Companies’ top brasses who create a positive working environment and who are genuinely concerned about the psychological well-being of employees certainly count a lot.

The awakening

Indeed, in the US, UK, Asia and other parts of the world, there are promising signs of an overall awakening. Many working professionals, realizing the importance of a fit mind and body, make it a point to take much-deserved days off to de-stress and rejuvenate their minds.

A mental break has become mandatory in today's fast-paced world. It is High Time individuals realize there need not be any shame in being diagnosed with a cognitive disorder, nor in admitting that one needs a mental break or therapy.

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While individuals grappling with anxiety and depression, harboring suicidal thoughts, and other forms of mental suffering may not all see the light at the end of the tunnel, and plunge further into the abyss, creating a conversation with them and lending a hand is crucial. With more people coming forward and openly discussing mental issues signal that there is general awakening in society about the important matter.

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