Saturday, 10 October 2015

How can I get better in my head?

With #WorldMentalHealthDay trending as the number one topic on Twitter today I for one am grateful that people feel less embarrassed to talk about their state of mind. I hope in our lifetimes we will get to a place where we can talk about being mentally ill like we can about having a cold, the flu or a broken arm or leg.

There are a myriad of ways in which mental illness can manifest itself - from suicidal thoughts and depression to dangerous or self-sabotaging thoughts and behaviours.

I just want to offer some words in the mere hope it may help someone if you're feeling a sense of despair or hopelessness:

Write about how you feel
It may help to have a pen and paper, tablet, dictaphone etc handy to put into words how you're feeling right now. Sometimes just the act of doing that brings a sense of release. Be as long as short as you want and if you wish return to the words in a few days. Do you still feel that way? If yes, you have the problem written down and like a math question a solution may be in sight, if no, a sliding scale of emotions may lead to a sense of hopefulness.

Speak to someone about how you are feeling
If you can, make a visit to your local GP and tell him or her how are you feeling. They will ask questions to ascertain the best way to start the healing process. You may have to wait to be referred to a specialist but it is worth starting.

Friends: Don't underestimate yours. Sometimes just telling your friend how you are feeling may lead to the road to recovery. They may have felt the same way some time ago and came to resolution; or they may know someone who did. If the conversation doesn't go as well as expected and they react in a way that undermines, belittles or even offends, realise that it is their issue about mental health that is the problem and you are looking to deal with yours in a proactive and productive way. It is up to you whether you wish to continue the friendship or not.

Easier said than done, but try and look after yourself
The reality is you are the most important thing to you. Cooking, cleaning may not seem so pressing but it may help so if you can, get involved in doing things that have the potential to make you feel better. If you're a social media or TV addict, perhaps tune out from them for a while. If you can, go for a walk somewhere that has natural elements, a forest trail or the like. Sometimes getting rooted in nature can lead to a proverbial sense of being grounded. Also, I'm not saying this will eradicate all ill-feelings but make sure you're well hydrated at the very least.

I know I may have some sceptics here but praying to a high power in the non-physical realm may bring a sense of peace. Do give it a try - and if you feel you have nothing to say, sing a song, chant.

Love you
Again, it may be easier said than done, but life usually offers more of what you put out. Try writing down five things you like in life, they can be as obscure or as obvious as you want. If you desire, ask friends and family what they like about you, it's not about validating yourself via them but sometimes in the midst of negative feelings it's good to get perspective from a different source.

I don't claim to be any way medically or psychologically trained but just hope to offer some tips that may help. I wish you good health - all around.

Blessings to you

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