It’s too often that we separate health and divide it into subsections. For example, we might look at a surface wound sustained through an injury different to an ankle pain. That might be because the treatment methods are different - the wound requires surgery while the ankle requires physio. It’s only natural that we see them as different things to be divided into brackets. Mental health is the same - we see stress as something different from an injury.
That’s not right, though. For those who suffer from mental health issues (and that could be anything from workplace stress right through to severe depression) there might be a period where you think to yourself that ‘you’ll just fight through this.' That’s a good attitude, but it might be harmful in the long run.
Ask yourself, would you try and fight through a broken foot? Hobbling around with severe pain? If we thought of the mind as a limb, we might actually look after it a lot better than we do. Treating mental health isn’t the easiest thing for doctors to do, but it can be done, it’s just going to take a lot of effort from yourself.
The first thing to do if you’re struggling with anything at all is to open up. It sounds silly, but simply talking to someone can take a lot off your mind. There are six billion human beings on the planet, and thus we are not designed to struggle with issues alone. We are creatures of community, and that extends to your fellow man/woman. If you’re struggling with issues, find the time to talk about them. It’s not going to solve your problems by any means, but getting it out there is going to take the pressure off of you. The world doesn’t have to simply exist within your head. Struggling with your mental health can damage you, it can lead to stress, depression, anxiety and overeating
. Find a way to share your struggles, so they don’t crush you under their pressure.
Being mindful of things is another great way to handle some issues. Think about how you think and you might unlock ways of coping. Mindfulness is becoming more and more medicinal in nature and is being adopted by doctors as CBT or Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
. If there are patterns in our thinking, maybe we can address the causes and rework our thinking patterns? Mindfulness has spirituality at its root and is based around the concept of meditation, or being in the moment - simply existing. The Mental Health Foundation say
that “the evidence for different types of mindfulness is promising and research has grown in recent years.” You do not necessarily have to embrace the full spiritual concept of meditation, but being mindful about things can help you in times of depression, anxiety or stress.
Your brain deserves to be happy; you deserve to be happy but it’s not a case of tricking your mind into always thinking about happy things - it’s actually more simple. Treat your brain with the respect it deserves. If you are getting stressed, take breaks. Find time to relax and savour your health. If you let stress build up, it can end in absolute disaster and have severe long term consequences for your health. Stress is a killer and should be taken seriously by yourself. Don’t work yourself into a corner of bad health.
Funnily enough, health is linked. Studies show
that exercise can treat cases of depression ADHD, PTSD and anxiety as effectively as prescribed medication without any of the nasty side effects. What’s more, you’ll enjoy all the benefits of regular exercise. It’s a great way of repairing your physical and mental forms. However, don’t over indulge in exercise if you are not used to it as that is a great way to hurt yourself! Signing up to a gym and sticking to a routine could be a great way to improve your fitness and mental health at the same time. It’s worth the leap.
There is always help to be found, and sites like www.schizlife.com/mild-schizophrenia/
deal with specific conditions. Finding a community of like-minded people to discuss ailments and issues with might be a complete eye-opener to you. As stated earlier, talking is good - but talking to people who understand is going to be a great help. Find people who will take your journey with you and share all the gory details of your trip. Likewise, aiming to help others could help you. Be a shoulder to cry on, and you can expect it in return. Communities can be found across the internet to deal with every condition known to man - whether it be stress, anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, schizophrenia or psychosis. You are never alone, just know that. A world of information lies at your fingertips.
It may go without saying, but visiting the doctor is key. If you believe there is more than meets the eye behind your mental health, you need to speak to a professional. Doctors can open up a wide range of treatment for you, and it doesn’t have to be medication. Having a professional to speak to who fully understands your condition can be a great way of coping. Not only that, but therapy can be arranged for you to regularly find coping methods. At a base level, it’s a good idea to get your struggles onto your medical record as early as possible so it can be documented for future reference. Another person to speak to isn’t going to hurt at all.
Your mental health is just as important as the health of your body. It is all linked, so don’t let one aspect of your health fall to the wayside. Concentrate on all aspects of your health and enjoy a more fruitful life. Never forget that you are not alone through any stage of this.