The dreaded two words of doctors and therapists, so how can you help yourself?
I personally am a rather cynical individual, yet have surprised myself in my endeavours to contentment in finding some self-help admittedly useful. Those techniques being written below, I am going to review some of these methods throughout this blog post in a plea to others who neglect to believe the simplicity of reading should improve one’s mental health status.
- ‘writing it down’
Matt Haig’s, Reasons to stay alive. A true work of art, crafted for its readers, providing a sense of hope amidst the scary honesty underlying every word. Matt’s book discusses his own mental health journey and how he has changed his life and outlook, written in bite-size chapters and with positively reassuring negativity throughout. As I confess the worst anecdotes for me to be those who pretend they went on a journey with no speed bumps or roundabouts.
I was sadly given this book as I obviously reflected more suffering than I thought in my attempt to smile and wave through recovery. However, it truly changed my negative outlook and sense of hope for my future state of happiness.
Basically, Reasons to stay alive despite the title possibly being a scary thought is a must have for everyone’s library. It’s the kind of book that resonates and becomes a part of you, at least it has for me.
I am currently reading ‘It’s kind of a funny story’ and it is not particularly similar to Matt Haig’s book instead of being of a greater fictional storyline, however, I am still impressed and as excited to reach the ending of the book.
Attempting to restrain from any more digression of my love for Matt Haig I shall return to the point of self-help. Though my introduction to books as a tool wasn’t by oneself, they have become a part of my journey to recovery. Whether the book is aimed to restore my faith in my recovery through stories of others or as an attempt to escape the mental restraints of anxiety by escaping… they are more inspiring than I could have imagined.
Before my anxiety took hold of my everyday life and processes I was an avid gym goer and had been for around 3 months falling in love with lifting weights and watching my body grow and my strength evolve. As I had trained my body to squat from 20kg with difficulty to 40kg with the same ease in just a few months. I found the routine, schedule and progress something that kept my mind busy and made me fulfilled. (Probably as a result of the scientific benefits of exercise and the release of mood-boosting chemicals.) The gym being one of my first goals, to rejoin when I begin to live my life how I want to again without the restraint of my bedrooms four walls.
Therefore I recommend the gym, walking or any type of exercise to everyone suffering from low mood or not. Not to forget the physical benefits guys!
Decide. Commit. Succeed.
If you can do that you can do anything.
‘Writing it down’ –
It’s hard enough thinking about it, never mind admitting I’m thinking about it.
A rather ironic thing to say for someone who has decided to write a blog and openly discuss her thoughts on a regular basis to people who don’t know her. I guess I’ve accepted its undeniable benefits as someone who lived her childhood denying to everyone that crying at movies was in any way remotely acceptable.
So, yes, writing things down can be useful.
In recovery, I believe that sadly most of us reach a point of helplessness, in pursuit of anything that could possibly help. At this point, even I admitted defeat and resulted in spending my evenings before falling asleep feeling my toes, fingers and stomach and emptying my mind.
However, Headspace made this a rather bearable concept with short snappy sessions that made it suitable for even the sceptics of the world, aka me.
My Top Tip –
The internet is your friend –
Lastly what made me become saner and a little less anxious admittedly may be something others have neglected to explore. Google It.
Uses of sites such as Mind have calmed my anxieties a multitude of times. From research of medication, and reading stories of others.
Pain demands to be felt [the fault in our stars].
As messed up as it sounds it becomes a little easier knowing others have felt the same pain and made it to an easier way of life. In a life that becomes consumed by coping mechanisms and anxiety, realisations of others strength to overcome this gives me the strength to overcome my own.