Mental health is tricky because many people don’t even realize that they have a mental illness. Usually it is because they have been living with that negative voice that lives inside their head for so long that it seems normative that they live that way. However it is possible for you to find solace, joy and a better life if you are willing to address your mental health issues. I find that most of the time people are more concerned by their physical health and do NOT make their mental/ emotional health a priority. As a society there is a huge stigma around mental illness and admitting that we are struggling in that area. Here are 5 reasons why taking care of your mental health is necessary:
“It’s exhausting to fight a war inside your head every single day.” ~ Mickie Ann
1) Our mental health affects our physical health.
Our bodies, mind and spirit are connected. We forget this some times and do not care for our psyche until we are in a crisis. When our mental health is poor, this creates stress in the body. Stress causes problems in the physical body over time, breaking down the immune system and leaving people taxed and more prone to physical illness. If this stress is not dealt with over a long period of time, this can create larger health problems, like autoimmune disorders and cancer. Do you want to learn more about the affects of stress? Watch this documentary.
2) Mental health affects the way that you view and interact in the world.
People who have untreated mental illness have difficulty having a positive view of the world. They can only see the negative and have difficulty maintaining friendships, relationships, and keeping steady work. They maybe so anxious that they have difficulty functioning or are impaired in social situations. It is harder to be reliable and show up for yourself and others. When one begins to work on changing ideas, core issues and retraining one’s brain towards the positive, mental illness can be arrested. This can help with changing unhealthy coping patterns.
Change your thoughts and you change your world. ~Norman Vincent Peale
3) Untreated mental illness keeps you stuck in unhealthy patterns.
Those who are do not treat their mental illness tend to lean on unhealthy coping patterns. Which include: self defeating beliefs, avoidance of situations, avoidance of feelings, isolation, smoking, using recreational drugs and drinking. This may provide temporary relief of the feelings that one is trying to avoid, however. it does not solve the issue at hand. There are healthier and ways to cope that will bring more stability and more long term relief. Unfortunately using new ways of coping is not instantly gratifying. It takes time to build new habits, but it is possible. Everyone has the resiliency to make it there. Check out this site that helps you to change the way you think, It is called the science of the greater good. Another great site is UNSTUCK.
“Feelings are much like waves, we can’t stop them from coming but we can choose which one to surf.” ~ Jonatan Martensson
4) Untreated Mental health keeps you isolated.
After a person has been struggling with mental illness for months, years, or decades it begins to keep then separate from others. Mental illness is a dis-ease of the mind. When we are uneasy and wrapped up in our minds, we are more apt to be too internally preoccupied to be present for our lives and loved ones. When mental illness takes a hold of a person, it can make them withdraw from the outside world because they feel judged and misunderstood. Isolation is a downward spiral and gives our disease fuel to keep us stuck. The only way to break free from isolation is to interact with others.
I know that reaching out when you are in a pattern of isolation seems impossible. Please take a chance and reach out so that you can get help. Here is a resource for the national alliance on mental illness (NAMI), they have groups for people who need help. Take a look at their site here.
“Isolation is a self-defeating dream. ” ~ Carlos Salinas de Gortari
5) Mental Illness does not allow you to be who you are meant to be.
Lastly, when you are living in your mental illness, you are not allowing yourself to live as the person that you truly are. Most people who struggle with their mental illness have the belief that there is something inherently wrong with them. This is a lie. There is nothing wrong with you. You have your mental illness as a result of life circumstances. There is nothing that you can do about what has happened in the past. However you can do something about now. If you go to get help from a life coach, therapist, self help group or a hotline things can get better. If you continue to hold onto your story and your beliefs, nothing will get better. You will grow more isolated, angry, and alone. Please don’t place yourself in this situation. Everyone deserves to be free, getting help can set you free.
I hope that this article has helped to inspire you to get help for whatever thoughts that plague you. Please feel free to comment below. Or you are always welcome to contact me.
Have a blessed week,
Image:DSCN6104 by Emma Line