How to recognise when your mental health might be getting worse.
For those of us who suffer with mental health issues, over time we learn those triggers and start to identify when our mental health drops in the list of priorities. If you’re new to this, grab a cuppa and get comfy while we give our own account of things we notice when our mental health becomes an issue.
I don’t tend to see my depression so much as an illness, rather an injury that flares up when I haven’t been taking care of myself. My experience is unique to me, the things that I think and feel will be totally different to you, but I hope that by sharing it can inspire you to look out for your own signs to help you in the future.
Heavy - and not weight, but everything around me feels heavy and everything seems like more of an effort than before. I’m not tired but I lack energy and general day to day motivation. I embrace this, not in a lazy way but I don’t beat myself up for going at a slower than my normal pace, I change my perspective and thank my body for still moving even though it doesn’t feel like this, I’m still moving and that is good
Angry - I am quick to anger, it is one of the first early signs that I notice before anything else and usually gives me a good nudge to practice meditation, I understand this is not for everyone but it helps me to focus on my breathing and continues my learning of letting go. We cannot control every situation and things will naturally annoy or anger us, but we can control our reactions. If you take a step back, breathe and let yourself calm down, whatever situation you are in can be defused much quicker than if you snap back without thinking.
Pretend - This is something I have quite the skill in, I’d go as far as saying that I’m expert level. When I catch myself ‘putting on a face’ or pretending everything is better than it is, that’s when I have to work the hardest to allow myself to know it’s better to wear your heart on your sleeve, people won’t treat you any differently, they’ll just treat you like you’re human having a low day, THIS IS NORMAL, you do you.
One of the best TedTalks I have listened to is ‘How to connect with depressed friends’ it is so brilliantly delivered and gives a comical side to a dark illness. People with depression still know how to laugh, they can still tell jokes and watch comedies we are just dealing with some internal issues like chemical imbalances that are having a moment.