Friday, 7 April 2017

Mental health and managing it

We still have a long way to go before we talk about mental health in the way that we should. In fact, the taboo around this subject (as well as the taboo around other subjects such as sex and money) is surely one of the reasons why a number of people are still struggling more than they need to.

It's no shame to admit that you're struggling, and, even if you have what seems to be a successful life or even if you're super spiritual or religious, it doesn't mean you're immune to life's struggles.

Right now as I write this, things are going quite well for me, but I am feeling the all too common symptom of brain fog and finding it hard to concentrate on things. I have been doing a course about Awareness in Mental Health Problems, and part of the course book talked about ADHD and it's symptoms. Whilst I'm not overly keen on labels like ADHD (partly because it says it's a 'disorder') I do think it helps to be aware of how your brain works and the things you struggle with.

Image courtesy of Pixabay

I do find it hard to concentrate and get things done at times - which can be quite annoying if you have good intentions of making a difference and setting things up such a website or a group. The amount of times I've defaulted back to Facebook or gone into freeze mode because I wasn't focused, must be well into triple figures now.

Luckily, I don't suffer from severe mental health issues any more, but I have been there - and I wouldn't wish some of the things I dealt with on anyone.

I think one thing that helps is to try and put a positive slant on things. So for example, with the breakdown I suffered in 2006 - which really was hell on earth - I have written about it - the whole book has not been finished yet and to be honest I have been a bit slack on working on it - maybe it will get published one day.

For things like ADHD and its symptoms, it can be hard to manage at times but writing about it can make at least one person feel like they're not alone. It's also important, as much as possible, to ensure that you are in the right environment - without doubt, part of the reason children diagnosed with ADHD can 'play up' is because the one-size-fits-all school environment is not suited to them. But that's another matter for another time. I have been in work environments which were so unsuited to me and I suffered for it. Work stress is truly awful.

As I've mentioned, awareness of your 'issues' does help, even if it may not solve your problems. I think part of my restlessness is because I am a traveller at heart and just want to see more of this beautiful world. The last few years have been very challenging but things are certainly changing for the better.

In terms of managing your mental health, all you can really do is do your best. I can't really give advice because everyone is different - for some, seeing your GP and being prescribed medication might be the best course of action, for others, it might be a case of doing more exercise. You know yourself better than everyone else so listen to your heart or do what you feel is right, one step at a time.

Any comments would be most welcome.

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