Cases of people smiling and posing for pictures just a few hours ago before committing suicide are no longer what can be categorized as rare incidents of the human history. And that is what makes this topic so sensitive and rightly important to be talked about and made aware of. The level to which mental illness can be so invisible and difficult to torch out is what makes it to be one of the most spoken topics about these days!
According to me, mental illness arises from the not so normal things going on persistently with that person suffering from it. Mostly a feeling arising from situations either that cannot be simply left easily or the thought that it is not controllable. It can be a persistent feeling of loneliness, shame, guilt, feeling of failure, effects of breakup that lasts way too long, persistent stress from work/family/school, etc. A prolonged feeling not treated or suppressed eventually leads to a catharsis and most sufferers of mental illness do not know how to deal with it. It is much painful for the people going through it because there is no handy measurable device, like thermometer for fever, that can prove how much trauma they are in. And quite a lot people not going through it or those who lack knowledge about it do not understand this feeling and side-line it by calling these people mentally weak. An acceptance and awareness of mental illness is much required in today’s world since we are met with most cold-blooded events than ever before.
Of course, there are so many mental health programs ongoing to help the depressed crowd, but apparently, this is not enough as there has been a very small decline in suicide rates. So, there is a need for us to be there for such people and do our part. Simply taking care of our near and dear ones, giving them time and casual observations too can do the trick. So, when something goes wrong with them, it doesn’t take time for you to ‘sense’ that something is going wrong and you can jump with immediate care to help out. Identify and help others too while you help yourself. I’ve heard many people saying that to help others you need to first help yourself. My opinion varies from this saying. Two people healing together is twice the joy felt on being successful at it. I help you; You help me, we make our way easier to trod on, and it’s fun too as you have a company who knows what you’re going through.
But does everyone have helpful people around? The empathizers throb in pain on the sight of others’ pain, the introverts end up with almost no one to befriend and talk to, the extroverts are so busy pretending to be normal that most people cannot make out what is going on inside that human. Hence, I always suggest people to befriend themselves before anything else because that is the most reliable source you will ever have. And as simple and obvious as it may sound, a lot of us die before we meet ourselves. Even if people around you want to help you, they may not be in a position to always be there for you. Mental health has a proportional relation with self-awareness. If you don’t know what you are feeling, you won’t be able to diagnose the issues going on with it. The more ignorant you become to this, higher the chances of you losing control over your mind. Usually, the people who suffer from mental illness are not in a state of mind where they can think very rationally as they are in pitch dark vacuum of emotions. Such people need external help without a doubt. But if people become self-aware, they can diagnose the moment they start slipping into this condition and work to balance themselves back. When we take our well being in our hands, we do it best.
There are a few very simple things that can be done to keep mind a healthy place to wander in:
1. You are so you, believe me, you have no reason to compare yourself with anyone else. We all grow at different rates, everyone gets there eventually!
2. Practice a habit of maintaining Gratitude journal; Write 3 best things that happened to you that day. It will shift your mind from focusing on things you don’t have to things that you are so fortunate to have!
3. Read, Read, READ! Ample sources are available for making you spiritually and literally string. Strength always helps in fighting personal issues. Books take you to places where you meet the depth of your mind.
4. Keep your circle real and clean. Before you think that you are not good enough, ensure if the people you have close to you are not the ones making you feel that way.
5. Don’t dwell in shame and guilt. If you have done something terrible, try making up for it. Repent by being a better person, dwelling on it will only make things worse and then you will have more things to be guilty of.
6. Exercise. Give more reasons for your body to stay fit. Ask yourself what are the benefits a fit body gives versus what a lethargic body does and which option you want to stay with!
7. Consult and confide. If you are in a phase of being emotionally torn, consult people who are mature enough to help you get back to your feet. Confiding does not mean your ego is being damaged, it only brings two people close and more reliable.
8. It’s okay to feel fucked up. Career crisis, financial crisis, existential crisis, happens. Happens. I know it doesn’t feel so good, but your life won’t change overnight. Trust the cosmos, trust the process.
9. Explore nature. Travel light. A simple habit of being amidst trees or near a waterbody will leave you with a tremendous surge of positivity. Ditch the phone and wander alone.
10. Accept who you are. It all begins with this. You will receive more if you are ready to receive more. Forgive yourself for the mistakes you have made or mistakes others have. Move on, heal yourself, there is a huge abundance waiting to come to you. Stay open.