How are you really? Do you feel joyful and content ? Is your mind settled and at peace? Are you hopeful that things will work out for your good or are you overwhelmed and cannot see any light at the end of your tunnel?
Take time to reflect and take stock of where you are now and where you desire to be…. look around you – do you have a reliable and dependable friend or a support network ? What is your mental health like today?
I will like to share this my write up with you. Hope it can help you address some issues.
Mental illness refers to a wide range of mental health conditions — disorders that affect your mood, thinking and behavior. Examples of mental illness include depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, eating disorders and addictive behaviors. Many people have mental health concerns from time to time.
I have been supporting and signposting folks who have been talking to me lately about their life challenges. Some close to me and some at a distance ,who have been struggling with anxieties, phobias and depression , a few have shared their close encounters with suicidal thoughts . This year 2020 with the pandemic has been very challenging on many levels, affected people differently and it is finally drawing to a close .
As we usher in a new year (2021)it is important we take time to look in and around us to review our mental health and well being .
I feel on reflection that there are still stigmas , negative labelling and derogatory terms used across the world in relation to mental health diseases / conditions that still makes it difficult for those affected or their relations / friends accessing care services that will help in meeting their care needs.
Mental illness is no respecter of persons. Your mental health and well being is important to give due attention and care as any medical disease or condition . It does not matter whether it is visible or not , as the same recognition should be given to its treatment and management plan as visible or non visible medical ones.
There is a place for prayers for our physical and spiritual wellness in order to be in good health and sound mind however there is a place for the recognition of the effects of hormonal and chemical imbalances , trauma or ill health which could trigger mental illness. This recognises the need for psychotherapy and other necessary interventions for a positive outcome.
Life events could positively or negatively affect us . Depending on whether our coping mechanism or support network are present or absent , the outcomes could potentially make one stronger or vulnerable.
Making time to reflect following events and experiences, strengthening the mind with encouraging words that affirm one’s self worth, uplift the mood, making time for fun and laughter, visit to places that positively stimulate, admiration of the intricacies of nature and building in rest are some helpful tips to keep our mental health good.
Find someone to open up to if you feel alone and cannot find a way out , seek support organisations ,write your thoughts or words that inspires you , draw if you cannot articulate your feelings ,listen to music that refreshes you and dance to lyrics you like as if you are the one the song was written for .
There is a place for psychotherapy, medications and respite. Only the person with mental illness can know how it is affecting them, take time to listen to them, be compassionate and non judgmental.
Has anyone been on your mind lately? Have you checked on them , have you been procrastinating or feel they are always well? Why not check on them !
Be intentional in doing what gives you joy , makes you happy and brings a smile on someone else’s face . Focus on the facts that you are unique , you matter and life is a journey with many changing seasons.
Wishing you all a blessed 2021.
Written by Temitope Alaka