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Your Mental Health Quotient Part III

Welcome back to Consider Yourself Hugged! Click here to listen to Episode 136. OR click YouTube below to watch! (***Disclaimer: We provide these notes as a skeleton for the show - nothing fancy 😄) Be sure to read/watch/listen to Part I before this episode.

Join us today as we continue discussing this wonderful tool to assess your current mental well-being. The MHQ is: "a snapshot of your self-perception along various dimensions of mental function that determine your mental wellbeing. It is not a measure of happiness or life satisfaction. You could, for example, be experiencing very difficult or sad circumstances in your life but nonetheless have all the capabilities to cope as best as one could, and therefore have a high level of mental wellbeing."

Part I was an overview, so be sure to start there – here’s that link . Part II delved more deeply into the score and 2 of the 6 subcategories. Today, we will cover the final 4.

What is the Mental Health Quotient?

From Sapien Labs: Mental wellbeing is the ability to handle life and its various stresses and challenges. The MHQ is therefore a snapshot of your self-perception along various dimensions of mental function that determine your mental wellbeing. It is not a measure of happiness or life satisfaction. You could, for example, be experiencing very difficult or sad circumstances in your life but nonetheless have all the capabilities to cope as best as one could, and therefore have a high level of mental wellbeing.

Note: If your score is negative, please seek professional advice.

Today, we’ll cover 2 of the 6 categories: Mood & Outlook and Social Self. All the referenced articles will be below under resources.

3. What is Drive & Motivation? (Directly quoted from Your MHQ Results)

  • This represents your ability to achieve your desired goals and to initiate, persevere and complete activities in your daily life. It is associated with interest, curiosity, motivation, and is also related to your overall energy levels.

  • Distressed forms of drive and motivation include severe addictions which cause harm, or extreme withdrawal from activities or social interaction.

Visit the articles (links below) for more, including:

  • Initiate and persevere with difficult tasks and activities through to completion

  • Be curious, interested, excited, and enthusiastic about the world around you

  • Overcome challenges and distractions that get in the way of your goals

  • If you want to increase your intrinsic motivation for tasks you find boring, you might consider tying in short-term, less desirable tasks to long-term goals. For example, showing up to work daily in a job that you don’t want may help you get a good recommendation down the road for a better one. Remembering this when you get bored or discouraged at work may be helpful.

4. What is Cognition? (Directly quoted from Your MHQ Results)

  • This represents the health of your cognitive skills which allow you to function on a moment-to-moment basis, make sense of complex sets of events and situations and display a longer-term perspective in your thoughts and behavior. It includes brain functions such as attention, memory, decision-making, learning and self-control.

  • Distressed aspects of cognition include severe or extreme forms of mental confusion, obsessive thoughts, sensory sensitivity, extreme risk taking, compulsive behaviors, psychosis and hallucinations.

Now visit the articles for more, including:

  • If there is an underlying or external cause that’s impacting your cognition, then addressing that can help remedy the problem. For example, sometimes people with emotional difficulties (e.g. depression) or high levels of stress can have trouble with decision making and planning. Active episodes of psychosis or mania can also affect thinking processes. Taking care of your emotional health in turn helps with cognition.

  • Sometimes addressing physical disease is key. For example, there are some medications that can slow down the progression of Alzheimer’s Disease and help preserve cognitive skills longer. Or, if someone has experienced a brain injury, they can develop new ways of dealing with memory challenges or problem solving over time.

  • The National Institute on Aging (NIA) recommends taking care of your physical health, keeping your mind active through learning new knowledge and skills, and staying socially connected. For example, activities such as volunteering, taking up a hobby, or taking a class can help build up a “cognitive reserve,” according to the NIA.

  • Activities like mindfulness and meditation can also help lower stress, which in turn helps improve cognition.

  • Activities that combine mindfulness and movement, such as yoga or tai chi can help improve brain function over time.

5. What is Adaptability & Resilience? (Directly quoted from Your MHQ Results)

  • This represents your ability to shift your behaviour and outlook in response to changing circumstances and cope with the challenges and setbacks that you encounter. It includes factors such as adaptability, creativity and problem solving, learning and emotional resilience. Your adaptability and resilience are important for your mental wellbeing as they underpin how you deal with and recover from the natural ups and downs of life, as well as more significant adverse events.

  • Distressed forms of adaptability and resilience include inflexibility, withdrawal and confused thinking.

Now visit the articles for more, including:

  • Get connected. Building strong, positive relationships

  • Make every day meaningful. Do something that gives you a sense of accomplishment and purpose every day.

  • Learn from experience.

  • Remain hopeful.

  • Take care of yourself.

  • Be proactive.

6. What is Mind-Body Connection? (Directly quoted from Your MHQ Results)

  • Your mind-body connection is important to your mental health because your mind and body are a combined unit where disturbances to your physical health can impact your mental health, and vice versa. It includes functions such as sleep, appetite, coordination, sexual satisfaction, and fatigue.

  • Distressed forms of mind-body balance can include insomnia or chronic and severe pain, as well as a propensity for infection or frequent physical symptoms (e.g. digestive issues) with no obvious physical cause.

Now visit the articles for more, including:

  • Particular types of therapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy, or CBT, can help you change negative thinking patterns.

  • Multiple studies show that increasing exercise can be effective in alleviating depression for some people. In addition to the many physical benefits we all know, exercise can actually improve nerve cell connections, making the brain work better.

  • Many studies also note the benefits of mindfulness, which can help rewire the brain and improve how it responds to stress.

  • Yoga, learning a new dance (which helps the body and brain), Tai Chi, or simply taking a mindful walk.


Thanks for joining today! As we’ve always asked in the past, please pass the show link along to your friends and subscribe, download, and review wherever you are listening. If you’re a woman and you haven’t joined our private FB group A Place for Women, please do that now! It’ll be your source of encouragement.

And until next time, Consider Yourself Hugged 😘🤗

Michelle Kixmiller, MSN, MAE, RN, APN, PMHNP-BC Michelle Kixmiller is a Board Certified

Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner and Licensed Educator. She works with children and adults with mental health needs including depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, ADHD, autism, schizophrenia, and obsessive compulsive disorder. Michelle served as a public school teacher and science department chair for over a decade when a family tragedy pulled her in a different direction. The death of her younger brother after a multiple year battle with depression and alcoholism led her to pursue a career in the mental health field. She went back to school to become a registered nurse graduating and gaining experience as a critical care nurse at a level 1 regional burn center prior to completing a graduate degree to become a mental health nurse practitioner. Her vision is holistic care through teamwork to create a more peaceful school environment for students and staff alike. No one should have to struggle alone. Michelle currently works full time for a non-profit community mental health center at an outpatient clinic and works PRN for an inpatient crisis stabilization unit. When not at work she loves spending time with family, traveling, watching movies (not scary ones), running (slowly), and Crossfit. Contact Michelle at Silver Lining Psychiatric Solutions, 615-378-7713 or

Grace Lichtenstein, MS is award-winning international speaker/trainer, coach, and a huge fan of all things nap-related. For the last 20 years, I have been working with individuals and corporate teams to improve their health, become more productive, and reduce their stress. Through my training in both Western and Eastern wellness philosophies (including an MS in Counseling Psychology), I truly has a comprehensive view of "what works". In addition, my diverse experience working with thousands of people in 49 states and in 2 foreign countries (ranging from native New Yorkers to Native Alaskans and from the FBI to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops), has allowed my to pinpoint some of the universal characteristics of successful individuals and teams. Contact Gracey at

Through my signature online programs or with one of my live training topics, I have the tools to help almost every individual and team reach their true potential. In addition, I am skilled at providing an exceptional learning experience based on client needs whether it be live onsite, webinar, a customized learning management system, email tutorials, or individualized life or executive coaching.

Tami West, PhD Stress and Mental Health Expert Dr. Tami West uses her entertaining and

compelling style to shine a new light on how to transform your life and discover solutions to life’s challenges. Her passion stems from a lifelong battle with an anxiety disorder which has uniquely equipped her to teach, encourage, and motivate others.

Tami has worked in a variety of industries including healthcare, school nutrition, corporate sales, and 10 years as a public-school teacher. In 2013 she received her PhD in Human Development, studying the connections among stress, emotions, and identity. She is so passionate about removing the mental health stigma that she recently became a certified Mental Health First Aid instructor.

Dr. West has spoken in 48 states across the US, as well as the United Kingdom, Australia, and New Zealand. In any given year, Tami speaks to groups with audiences consisting of anywhere from 100 to 3,000 people.

Her audiences are diverse and include Danbury Federal Prison inmates, teachers, administrative assistants, food service, and senior executives at Social Security Administration.

Dr. West is the author of several successful publications including two books: The Stress Club, Life Without the Monsters and Thrive. She is a mother of eight in a blended family and enjoys reading historical fiction, traveling with her husband Tim and family, and watching The Big Bang Theory.

Contact Tami at or follow her at Tami West Seminars.

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1 Comment

Tami West, PhD
Tami West, PhD
Jul 05, 2023

Now that we've finished the series, we'd love to hear what you learned or other suggestions you have for the 6 categories!

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