Today is World Mental Health day, which has made me reflect introspectively, especially as in August I opened up about my own struggles regarding mental health, if you haven’t read it check it out here.
What I have learned is that these health issues aren’t something that can be magically cured or fixed overnight, but it’s about implementing certain hobbies and activities into your life to work towards improvement. It’s important to understand that it doesn’t mean these things will make any of it vanish.
It’s healthier to seek alleviation than it is eradication, especially in the long-term.
I’ve found that it is also beneficial to be open with people, the saying ‘a problem shared is a problem halved’, may not necessarily fit into all mental health categories but it can alleviate it. I find myself frequently panicking over how someone will respond to my erratic behaviour because they don’t know my circumstances, and when I have told people it has helped both parties.
If you are open about your struggles with those around you, people will be more understanding when you’re having your off-days. Try not to succumb to it, but don’t blame yourself for the times you do. Something that really helps me is reminding myself that it is okay, to not be okay. This helps me feel like less of a burden and more able to ride it out.
This year’s focus for World Mental Health Day is Suicide Prevention, I wouldn’t feel too comfortable going into my experiences with that side of poor mental health. However, I am pleased that this is this year’s theme, as suicide is the most important factor that we need to prevent by implementing better support systems and self-help techniques to save more lives.
The scheme is called ‘Wait!’
Watch out for signs of distress and changes in behaviour
Ask “are you having suicidal thoughts?”
It will pass, assure your loved one that, with help, their suicidal feelings will pass with time.
Talk to others, encourage your loved one to seek help from a GP or a health professional.
Find out more about how you can help World Mental Health day here, I especially like the ‘Tea and Talk’ initiative as it encourages human connection and informality.
Today I plan on making sure I can reach out to as many loved ones as possible. I believe that simply asking someone if they are okay and showing that you’re willing to give them the time to engage with them it can help make someone feel significant and cared for.
If you have someone in your life that you haven’t spoken to a while, just send them a quick text checking in on them.
It could make their day!