My Mental Health

M

So, today is World Mental Health Awareness Day, and as you know, I do have a history with my head. And for this post, I want to talk about how I manage myself now, and compare and contrast with how I was.

I’m still on medication. I have been on it for over a year at this point. In fact, today, I went to my GP to renew my prescription. The medication still works for me, and it allows me to rationalise situations and think of healthier ways of dealing with things. That’s not to say you pop a pill every night and it solves all your problems. It doesn’t. The way I see it, the medication I am on gives me the tools to help cope with obstacles and situations. On some days, the medication is more than enough, but on harder days like important events, meetings, big social gatherings, you need to rely on a level of willpower.

I am also still using my coping mechanisms, namely my iPod, a water bottle, gum, and my stress toys. They still work fine for me, they give me something to mess with whilst I am out and about and take my focus away from stressful obstacles. If you don’t have those things to help you, I would suggest using them, because they are useful and they do help, but certainly, mix and match those things.

Something that has helped me is self-care, by doing things to get me out of the house, by doing things that I enjoy. Just today, I went up to Ormskirk Town Centre to do a few errands, but I took my time, went into a few shops, had a sit down in the sun as it was quite nice out, I enjoyed a soft drink as well. I also go to my room, listen to music, watch a bit of YouTube, and sometimes do some writing, be it for the blog (like I am doing now), or for myself like writing poetry. While socialising with my peers is still an obstacle for me, and probably always will be, I am trying my hardest. I went to a party on Saturday, and I enjoyed myself there.

Locking myself in my room used to be my way of coping, and that was not healthy, as I wouldn’t leave the house, and that caused me to have a nosedive of sorts. I didn’t have the coping mechanisms or the tools to cope with either, so I used to go out of the house with nothing but the clothes on my back. I suppose what I am trying to say is that things will never be perfect, and pushing yourself into something you are uncomfortable in to try and ‘fix’ yourself is the wrong way to go about it. You need to work on building yourself up again, and that’s what I did.

That’s all I have to say on the matter really, and I hope that this post helps people a little. Help is there, you just need to work your way up to finding it.

About the author

Ben

Since 2012, Benjamin Attwood has written for the If you Ask Ben blog.

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