I don’t know if it’s just me but there seems to be much more interest in mental health than in recent years. People are focusing on self-care and mindfulness which are helpful tools but these tools do not give the whole story. There are people out here experiencing a mental illness or mental health distress and you might never know.
NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) shares some statistics about mental illness from 2015, “Approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S.—43.8 million, or 18.5%—experiences mental illness in a given year. Approximately 1 in 25 adults in the U.S.—9.8 million, or 4.0%—experiences a serious mental illness in a given year that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities.”
This means that there are more people within our inner circle (and maybe it’s us) that have experienced a mental health issue such as depression or anxiety. Let’s face it, life can throw us some curveballs and I am glad there is an emphasis on better self-care practices and having support in 2018. Everyone can benefit from better awareness regarding their emotional health. What’s going on in our mind (the way we think, our self-talk, how we perceive the world, our values/morals, etc.) impacts what we believe and how we interact and act each day. We have the luxury of being our closest confidant because we go to sleep and wake up in this same body and we have a choice. We can choose how we navigate along this journey. So when I say mental health care is self-care, I mean, it’s self-love. Caring for your emotional health is taking time each day to get to know yourself, love up on yourself, put some energy and value into yourself. My hope is with an emphasis on self-love and self-care to promote emotional wellness, the stigma and labels of mental health as a negative thing (I mean what does it really mean or look like to be crazy?) will dissipate.
I am thankful for the bloggers, influencers, writers, celebrities, and advocates who share their story on the daily. To have some transparency about their everyday difficulties and how they worked to overcome normalizes the process of emotional healing and wellness. Having optimal mental health does not mean you will never have problems, it means you’ll be more aware of situations that negatively impact you and you’ll have ways of coping when difficulties occur.
To start taking better care of your emotional health:
Begin a self-care practice (My worksheet is a great start)
Utilize your support system by letting them know when you need their support
Seek a therapist
Meditate and increase your mindfulness throughout the day
Take some time to be quiet