Let’s forget about the numbers and statistics around global mental health for a moment. We all know already that they do not look very positive, in fact they are quite alarming. But why should we really care about our own mental health?
Because it’s simply dangerous. And the danger does not come only from the results of untreated mental health issues, but also from the fact that many times we do not link our negative emotions or feelings with our mental health. Basically we consider these factors as normal or we link them to other issues.
What would you say if I mention that “I have a sore throat and that makes me think that I have a heart issue” or “I believe that my shaking hands has something to do with my stomach”? It’s silly isn't it? But we constantly do that with poor mental health symptoms. We assimilate them to something else or even worse, we neglect them. Because we are scared or we fear to think that there might be something with our mind.
Yes, we do that, and we are in 2020. We still haven’t accepted that our mind is not supposed to adapt to our behaviour, to our lifestyle all the time. We live our daily lives as our mind is forced to accept all the information, the fact that maybe we have bad sleeping habits, that we work 10 hours a day, that we spend 2 hours a day on commute, that we eat whatever is quicker. Well it’s time to acknowledge that the life we live pushes us to extremes sometimes, or quite often.
We are still in the middle of a big global crisis, Covid-19. We have been through a lockdown and we still wonder: “Why am I so unproductive?”, “Why do I feel like I don’t have energy for anything that I used to enjoy before?”. How many of you asked yourselves: “Why am I not trying to get some support so I can overcome these challenges?” The answer stays in those numbers and statistics that we agreed not to mention in the beginning.
The other day I read an article about how many people struggle to come back to the lifestyles they had before the pandemic, and not because they did not enjoy it, but they found new habits; people who used to work every day until 6pm, attended different events or meet friends after work, getting back home late every evening. During the lockdown, some of these people got used to watching movies at home, reading, having their meals in time, basically having a more relaxed lifestyle. Many of these people are struggling to understand why they do not feel ready to go back to the very active lifestyles they used to have, why they feel like giving up on a night out with friends for a movie at home, on their own. The answer from professionals is easy: it’s ok, it is normal and nobody said we have to be the people we used to be. But you see, for many of you that statement is not enough to find some comfort, this why you need a bit more support from a professional;
So my advice, unless you can press reset, take into consideration that at least once in a lifetime you might be in the situation to seek mental health support. Numbers? Let’s bring them down.