STARTING OUT AS A TEEN…
“The Nelsons just brought their boy back from the therapist, while Ben, a family friend is still awaiting his next court call and maybe a few months in a juvenile home. These two lads just had their share of tragedies. Ben managed his low self-esteem urge by taking his anger out on the rich kid in school, brutalized him and stripped him of his fancy watch. Now his single mom who has been out of job for five years now would bear the cost (the expensive watch has to be replaced).
John Nelson had a better part of the tragedy, he took to smoking in his closet in the quest to have control and go wild like the other kids that bully him at any chance they got, his brother snitched and now he’s getting help.
That story paints for us how Teens had to struggle to stand up for themselves and the unthoughtful actions they take to get a hold of their situations.
WE HAVE STOPPED BEING CURIOUS ABOUT THIS FEELING!
As much as we desire to live free, free from ill-health and own a sound mind, Mental illness has for long being that claw that scratches us in the back that we have refused to cautiously talk about. Attention has long been paid to just the physical threats that “we can see” but we have neglected “what we feel”.
Our actions and inactions are controlled what we feel and if not carefully channeled we may end up doing things we never bargained for. Therefore, what and how we feel have a hold on our general state of wellbeing as would be discussed as we take a walkthrough.
WHAT MENTAL HEALTH/WELLNESS IS?
Mental Health is the stronghold of human feeling and it’s an influencer of human thoughts and consciousness. It is that part of us that codes for how we cope with stress, loosen off the grip of challenges and hardship on us. It equally influences our emotions and set a line for a prosperous relationship with our own self and with people around us. However, cautious effort not taken to groom this cogent part of us makes us susceptible to different grades of emotionally-linked disorders like Anxiety, Depression etc.
WHAT MENTAL WELLNESS IS NOT?
Some misconceptions about ‘what is’ and ‘what is not’ about mental wellness that we have subscribed to have been the reason for the nonchalant acts we put up. The following are some of the common categories of misconceptions that most people probably belong to:
Some people still believe that speaking up about our mental wellbeing is a sign of weakness and so, many people then tend to prove resilient about it even though they lack the ability to hold up or put up a fight to what they feel.
Life challenges can hit us so bad that we get knocked off to the edge of a cliff almost falling and instead of trying to talk about it and fly to safety, we try not to magnify or exaggerate it by not just talking about it.
Men are tough beings:
Men have always proven to be the strongest human living on planet EARTH, maybe in the physical sense and there are things they believe they are not supposed to feel weak or feel faint about, so they make it look like one of the many things that should befall a man and purposely ignore the grief it brings.
No cause for alarm:
People still treat emotion-linked feelings like a random pile and look for pills, drink high or find solace in their crib instead of speaking up.
THE LIFE CYCLE AND TREND OF A BAD MENTAL HEALTH
In an average population of victims, it starts as a minor feel of mediocrity and negativity until it becomes a plaque, we become sorry for. As simple and less scary as it sounds, it can puncture the heart of our mental health and open the backdoor for anxiety and depression to creep in.
Low self-esteem relieves us of our power of self-confidence and strips us of the courage to try out new things and ideas. We suddenly become less motivated and afraid of what is yet to come. We begin to believe the feeling that says we would be ‘safer’ in our lonely crib and that is the reason why most people take to isolating themselves and communicate less about what they feel- they keep it all a secret!
SOCIAL MEDIA FUELS IT TOO
While individual background and beliefs could kickstart it, negative vibes from social media strengthens it. Instead of awakening potentials in people, subscribing to social media now looks so much like subscribing to getting your heartbroken. They often paint someone else’s life like they are having it ‘perfect’. Teens get carried away looking at the bright sides they made them see, they become envious of the said perfect life they had been denied and so the feeling of inferiority complex sets in.
Different uncultured habits ranging from smoking and drinking high to escape these feelings to a subsequent urge to ‘hustle hard’ and build their own perfect “castle’ is what victims begin to nurse and this could drive them insanely.
It can get so bad that they now begin a new life in a different world entirely. Some subscribe to sleepless nights and pull down their social and moral activeness while the stronger ones just stay low in their crib and waste their lives away.
The feeling of Anxiety and Depression:
What differentiates a person with strong mental health and a victim of the hark-ward side of the mental state of health is “Resilience”.
Resilience is the ability to expect, cope and recover from stress. However, an inability to resist the odds that comes with life and its hardship makes a person vulnerable to various emotionally-linked disorder like anxiety and depression. Unfortunately, this duo doesn’t walk alone, they are always just a few meters away from each other. People with deformed state of mental health gets easily depressed at every little checkpoint they get to in life. They go blue, feel down, feel fear and panic so easily.
TO THE EXTREME…
This could go as wild as victims developing sleeping problems like “insomnia” which on a long-term base becomes a marker for psychological risks like mood swings, undue hallucinations, depressed state of creativity and it could as well be a marker of life-threatening diseases like heart failure, diabetes and lot more. Medical reports have also shown that they often leave their victims with a depressed immune system putting them at even greater risks.
Suicidal thoughts and Violence:
A depressed soul obviously don’t think straight anymore, no life-worth-living-for anymore, they either give up on life and want to end it or they think taking it out on others would make them feel fly in their lonely world, so they take to different acts of violence ranging from rape to serial killing and get their own lives and others’ down the cliff crumbling.
HOW TO BOOST YOUR MENTAL HEALTH AND FLY TO SAFETY
“Fly just before you fall” should be our watchword, everyone is bound to have a bad day, bad time and moment where we all feel like giving up. No one however gets to see us drowning, they get too busy sorting and dealing with their own side of the coin too and we are therefore left to fight it all with our own fist.
Here is a little tip on how you can find an escape route and take that flight, instead of trying to run away, you can always learn to stay afloat without drowning.
Communication is vital for healthy living. When you communicate actively you will never feel like you’re walking alone and if you’re not walking alone then obviously there is a hand to hold and a shoulder you can always cry on when it gets darker.
Speak up about it (your feelings), share your fears with someone who cares and cross the wavering bridge holding each other’s hand. You will get to help yourself and get an extra star on your badge for walking someone else through.
Also, adding to your friend list is like drinking an extra tumbler of life-dote that would last you a lifetime.
Go and get a couple more ‘real’ folks!
Exercise is an ideal therapy that helps to keep you going regardless. it is known for not just making you feel high in your muscles but it is known for secreting endorphins, chemicals in the brain which ordinarily codes for an active state of mind and keeps your self-esteem peaking. It boosts emotions and yes, a day at the gym is better off the pills and alcoholics we take for relief of what we feel.
Keep in touch with others:
I once had a roommate who believed so much and talked about ‘keeping in touch’ like he meant it. I have always laughed and found an excuse out of listening to it, but trust me someone out there is about to go missing! and you might be the only one who would save him/her from eternal regret and damnation. A little chat with a positive vibe could strike a point, it could keep the piece right for him/her and before you know it, you could become the hero that just saved their day.
Take a nap and use a break:
Taking enough nap and successive series of sound sleep could be the antidote that would revive you. Never get too worn out to lay on your bed and zoom off to a different world of relief right under your pillow.
Join active groups where cases like yours are being ironed out. Get to see those who boarded the same boat like yours but aren’t sinking yet. Nobody has ‘the perfect life’ everybody is just trying to keep floating, facing the positive part of life and trying to flee the tides of contempt and fear.
Take a walk with “puppy” (your pet), go for a jog, hang out at your favorite tea shop, visit the neighbor next door and get on a sport together. Play mind-challenging and board games, they will help you strike a balance.
Keep a diary:
‘Pearl’ isn’t a bad name for one, isn’t it? Keep more notes of events when you hit it big and less of the ones that seemed a little bit down. Record every important thing that you got involved in; the amazing friends you just made, the funny jokes you told, the new story you just wrote, a new Artwork you’re willing to make public soon (it would boost your self-esteem further).
Anytime you seem to feel uncomfortable about what you feel or see, call upon ‘pearl’ and let her get to put that smile back on your face.
On a final note, you deserve to be happy regardless of how dark the clouds are. Nobody ever really has that perfect life of a paradise, they just want to feel good and enjoy life.
You deserve better, don’t look too cold to enjoy your life.
“Go and live free, break grounds, inspire and help others break out of their own cells and hone their world”
I hope my piece was helpful. What are your thoughts on Mental Health? Fill the comment form below to join in this conversation.
- My Name is Israel, a prolific freelance writer. I am passionate about writing and exactly that's my hobby. I am an author of various articles published and unpublished.