It’s World Mental Health Day, an important day to raise awareness, reduce stigma, and educate and support each other in our mental health journeys. So I want to talk about some of the barriers we put up that get in the way of us tackling our mental health successfully. Some of these barriers have been personal to me, but I am fairly sure, many of us have felt similarly or might be looking in a mirror reading this.
Barrier No. 1: The mindset
When we’re struggling with our mental health no matter what it is, we live with a mindset that lacks hope. Whether depression has dampened the future view and left you feeling hopeless. Your anxiety seems never-ending almost constant. The panic attacks keep coming no matter how much you try to stay calm & breathe. Your stress levels are spiking so much you can’t focus on the support never mind use it. Hope is easily lost with mental health issues because the battle can seem constant, and turbulent.
But that loss of hope affects our mindset. It changes the openness to hopelessness like nothing will work, we’ll always feel like this and there’s no way out. Even when we’re feeling okay, having a good week or have found really helpful ways to manage & cope that hopelessness can hit us out of nowhere. Just for a second, or perhaps it sticks around for a while.
That hopelessness makes all the advice - just go for a walk, talk about it more, practice mindfulness, be grateful for what you do have, eat well, sleep well, exercise - seem like utter bullsh*t. Because when we’re feeling hopeless (or think hopelessly) it doesn’t seem possible that something so simple could work.
Barrier No. 2: Instant Results
So we might give it a go, but it doesn’t have instant results, and feel duped. Supporting the belief that nothing really works. The key is consistency.
Doing it regularly. Filling pockets of your day with peace, joy, and calmness. Quieting the mind from usual thoughts and feelings that stew and leave us numb, scared, anxious, and more hopeless.
You have to interrupt the cycle, build a practice that works for you - little & often, slow & steady - and find as many tools as you can that support YOUR needs. No one else’s - they might coincidentally be the same but don’t assume.
Barrier No. 3: Zero Patience
Now, I’m not referring to the unsolicited variety of advice, or the blasé ‘just calm down’, cheer up, go for a walk stuff. That is challenging to receive, but the real stuff, the healthy lifestyle, things your mum lectured you about as a teenager, and seeking support through this, does actually work.
It’s never as easy as it sounds. But it does work, eventually. I think the biggest barrier to support our mental health comes with the lack of patience and the need for instant results that we probably apply to everything in life these days but really get in the way of our wellbeing. A broken bone doesn’t fix itself after a day with a cast on to support it, but without it, it would likely end much much worse. Once the cast has been on for a while, the bone will heal with daily support.
Think of mental health like that, those low feelings, the anxious thoughts, the overwhelming stress - it’ll all stay with us till we tackle it, and when we do we need to be patient for the results, it is going to take more than a guided meditation, a good night of sleep and a bowl of soup to feel better.
That’s why I’m here. To support and guide you to figure out how you can make those things work for you in your life, then it just clicks. You see it working, you feel more driven to keep it up and your mountain has become almost a molehill for the most part. We all have ups and downs though - unfortunately, nothing in life is hunky dory but we can make it a lil more hunky OR dory together 🐠
Book a Discovery Call now if you're ready to break these barriers yourself!