Mental Health: It’s Okay to not be Okay

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A few months ago, I wrote a post about helping a child with anxiety and depression. I got a lot of positive feedback and all sorts of people reaching out about how they also have kids suffering with similar issues. Now it’s time to address a new topic in the same realm. How do you help yourself when you are suffering from mental health issues? How do you even know that may be the case? We all get in over our heads sometimes, so how does that differ from a clinical diagnosis? I’ve recently gone through this journey myself, so it’s time for me to share in the hopes that it may help someone else.

Realizing there is an Issue

Life has been heavy lately. That statement is probably true for a good number of people reading this. Lately, I’ve felt like I get up only to get knocked back down again. This feeling has permeated every piece of my life.

My mom was recently visiting and she’s the one who told me that maybe it was time to get some help. What she was seeing was a daughter who could no longer find joy in simple things. I had become unable to find happiness in happy moments. Suddenly, it felt like a chore to smile and enjoy life. What was the point when something bad was likely to happen tomorrow? Because of this, I felt like maybe my feelings were all situational. Once all this stuff ended, I’d likely be fine and back to feeling like my normal self. Unfortunately, that’s not always how it works. I had to come to terms with it being okay that I wasn’t okay.

Identifying the Problem

There are a few things to look out for when you are trying to decide if you need to find some help for yourself. Keep in mind that I am not a doctor, but rather a person who has recently experienced several of these things myself.

Difficulty finding joy is a big one. By that, I mean no longer finding joy in things that usually bring you joy. If you start to dread activities that you used to appreciate, take a step back and think about why. Another key sign is being exhausted, but not purely in the physical sense. It’s the desire to sleep all the time or having difficulty getting out of bed in the morning. Also, crying is a normal emotional response, but crying more than usual can be an indication of a problem. Lastly, not caring about what happens to you or to others is not a good sign. A lackadaisical view on life is troublesome. When you resign yourself to the glass always being half empty, you may need to talk to someone.

Getting Help with Mental Health

Once you’ve come to the realization that you may be suffering from anxiety and/or depression, it’s time to seek some help. How you choose to approach this is a very personal choice. I chose to speak with someone who was able to prescribe medication. They were able to give me a diagnosis and plan accordingly. I made this choice because it seemed like the quickest fix. This professional recommended talk therapy to me, as well, but let’s face it. Finding the time to speak with someone regularly as well as finding a person who has availability is difficult. I do think it will eventually be a part of my process. I’ve been told that this medication takes about a month to work, so I’m still waiting. I’m hopeful that it will ease some of the symptoms, but know that it may not be the end-all, be-all solution.

One thing that is for sure is that I will be fine. I’m on the road back to happiness. For now, it’s okay to not be okay. If you feel like your mental health is suffering, there is help available. Check with your doctor to find out your options. You’ve got this.

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