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Originally Posted On: How To Ask For Help When It Comes To Mental Health – The Lifestyle Blogger UK
March 2020, as we all know, was the month that the UK joined other nations in a life-changing lockdown. In a bid to combat the Coronavirus pandemic. At this point in time, lives were turned upside down. People were genuinely worried about their future. Many people were furloughed from work. Others lost their jobs and livelihood entirely. Some had to work harder than they’ve ever worked before and in very new, scary circumstances. Circumstances that have brought up some new, or long standing mental health issues.
Fast forward a year later, and as a country we’re slowly returning back to some kind of normality. Life is becoming something we can all relate to again. Most people have returned to work. Pubs and restaurants are serving outdoors once again. We can see friends. Go to the gym, and simply live our lives as we once could. Free from the restrictions of the past year.
But How Are We Actually Doing?
Some people have relished in furlough. The thought of not having to get up in the morning to commute to work. They’ve enjoyed a more fluid home life. Spending endless hours watching Netflix. Completing creative projects and just doing the things they never had the time to do before. In contrast, others have suddenly had a much more challenging year. Parents have become teachers, learning how to juggle home schooling with working from home. All whilst holding on to that last bit of sanity. Some people have lost support networks, and had nearly 14 months of pure loneliness.
Many people haven’t fully opened up or even admitted to themselves how much Covid-19 has affected their lives, and health. Or even how it’s affected their children/families. Both on a personal level, and affecting relationship dynamics. But now, more than ever we must listen to ourselves. Listen to our thoughts and pay attention to our bodies and general mental health issues.
Paying Attention To Our Emotions
Whether we need to lose that lockdown weight, or step away from a multitude of unhealthy lockdown habits that’ve helped us cope in the short term. But are less than helpful as a long-term solution. In many cases, where making changes can be difficult, people can benefit from getting some external help. Help to move forwards with new, healthy behaviours, thoughts, feelings and emotions.
The virus, lockdown as a whole, and the relaxing of lockdown has caused many people to become anxious, nervous, worried or even angry. Those people who already had underlying mental health issues are beginning to notice this has been exacerbated by the virus. Therefore potentially needing further help to navigate out of it. Be it through medication, counselling, psychotherapy, or hypnotherapy.
For some people, these physical and mental health issues may be something completely new and very daunting to deal with. People are often very ashamed and embarrassed, especially when needing help with their mental health. However, if a person’s health is suffering, whether mental health or physical health. They should be empowered to seek help, rather than persecuted or judged for it. Most people wouldn’t be ashamed to book a Dr’s appointment about a painful elbow. They’d go to A&E if they were worried that they’d broken a bone. So, why should a mental health crisis be ignored?
Fear Of Seeing Help
This fear of seeking help for our own mental wellbeing can be debilitating for some, and unfortunately, it often won’t get better by itself. Regardless of any social or cultural influences, there’s absolutely no reason why anyone should be left feeling isolated. Alone with their negative and distorted thoughts and beliefs or unhelpful emotions. We, as humans, need to continue to move forwards. Changing the very outdated stigma that’s attached to mental health issues.
As a species, we have evolved and learnt so much in the past century, we now have access to a vast array of medications, that can be used on a short-term or a long-term basis to address numerous issues. Alongside this, we have developed different coping strategies that give us relief from unhelpful thoughts and feelings. These can be as simple as crunching on ice cubes and using therapeutic toys (e.g. fidget spinners, push poppers) to distract our minds, or using breathing exercises to create a natural calm state. On top of these we have learnt how different therapies can help us, and there are so many! You may be surprised how many people engage in therapy in order to develop their own coping strategies to help them in day-to-day life.
Did You Know?
- It is estimated that 1 in 6 people experience a common mental health problem each week.
- 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem of some description each year in England alone.
- 1 in 5 people have suicidal thoughts, and 1 in 14 self-harm in some way.
The above statistics would mean that within the ‘average family’ at least 1 person may not be feeling that great within themselves, and if that person has not had the confidence to admit they need a little help with their health they could be suffering in silence. Which is why we must now, more than ever communicate, break down barriers and talk, visit, call, and do anything we can in order to make sure our families and friends are healthy and doing ok!
Often people may feel that they are weak, and will be looked down upon for admitting mental illness, or that they should be ‘above’ struggling psychologically. But social status and class doesn’t come into it. Even members of the British Royal Family have been through their own mental health struggles. As many know, Prince Harry suffered terribly with his mental health and anxiety, no one is invincible, and no one should feel that they need to appear invincible! Anyone can develop a health issue, be it chicken pox, arthritis, anxiety, depression, weight issues, substance abuse, or cancer… These are all naturally occurring issues, and are nothing to be ashamed of.
Finding Your Confidence
If, after reading this blog, even just one person may have found the confidence within themselves to say, “OK, maybe I should get some help”, then it will have been worth the time to write. So, whether you reach out to a friend, a family member, call a helpline, or even look into booking a counselling or hypnotherapy session, taking the first step is something you should be very proud of, for standing up for yourself and for your own happiness and health.
Otherwise, if you’re feeling OK yourself right now, then make a point to go and talk to your loved ones and the people you care about. Especially those who have less support available to them, because having a simple conversation with someone they trust about whether they’re doing OK can be enough to generate a huge change in someone’s life. By taking the time to talk to people about their mental health, we become a part of the solution. The more people talk, the more socially acceptable it will be for people to do the same in years to come.
Author Bio – Rory Z Fulcher is an energetic, enthusiastic and passionate hypnotherapy trainer, with a cumulative theoretical and practical knowledge of hypnosis that would be difficult to surpass, helping provide in-depth Live Online Hypnotherapy Certificate Courses via Hypnosis-Courses.com