“Music is my solace. I play piano and sing. Music has definitely saved me.”
Humans are cultural beings. The first connections with culture are usually made within the family; they influence the way we see ourselves and what we think is important.
Your family and cultural background shape your attitudes about mental health and wellbeing: how you are taught to cope with problems and difficult situations, how you talk about them, who you talk about them to, and how you seek support. Your culture may also shape how you relax, practise self-care, and resolve conflicts.
Living in a community that rejects aspects of your culture – such as identity, beliefs, or sexual orientation – can have negative impacts on your wellbeing. If you live where the dominant culture is different from, or lacks tolerance to your own cultural heritage, or you have parents from different cultural backgrounds, you may experience some conflict around your cultural identity.
Being disconnected from your cultural heritage can lead you to question who you really are and where you belong. This may cause you to feel lost and isolated. Connecting with culture can have a positive impact on your sense of belonging and identity – and in turn, on your mental health and overall wellbeing.
Read more about looking after your wellbeing on our meaningful life pages.
A closer look
Singing and dancing can increase happiness
Reconnecting to culture can improve social and emotional wellbeing
Mental health is often viewed through a cultural lens
You might find online and phone-based mental health resources helpful. Some suggestions are below. You can find more with our Search tool.