This week is Mental Health Awareness Week. The WHOLE week! One week in the year where mental health comes in to focus. For me though, my mental health is my focus the other 51 weeks too, both the good and the bad. I live with it every day of the year.
The theme for the Mental Health Awareness week this year is kindness. We need to be kind to our partners, our families, our neighbours, the checkout staff, the bin men, the bus drivers and so on. However, the most important person to be kind to is… yes, it is ourselves. One way to do this is to stop putting yourselves down by all these negative thoughts: “I am not good enough”, “I am stupid”, “People think I am an idiot”, “I am good for nothing, I’ll never fulfil my dreams”. The list goes on. By letting ourselves think these thoughts, which are constantly repeated, they become the focus and ultimately our beliefs. If you believe you are all these things, you will not accomplish anything, and your mental health will suffer. A lot.
This week I will share some of my experiences, highlighting the fact that it is ok not to be ok, and what I do to keep my downs as controlled as I can. Because it really is ok not to be ok. Our mental health matters. We need to talk about it, to everyone, regardless if they are listening or not. I simply mean that we need to break the stigma surrounding mental health. Why should we feel bad talking about it? It only makes matters worse.
I am currently working on being kinder to myself by recognising the negative thoughts I have and not letting them get to me. Now it is your turn, think kind thoughts (unless you really have been an idiot and if so you need to own it and get on with it).
Please check back over the course of the week as there will be a lot of stories, ideas, and ways to help ourselves to feel better. Stay safe out there!