Mental Wellness Challenge – 2021, February 26

Mental Wellness Challenge – 2021, Feb 26

February is pretty much done… that month went by fast in some respects and super slowly in others… I suppose that’s all perspective…

Last week I carried my challenge from the previous week forward as I didn’t have an opportunity to post.  So – my challenge for last week was:

  1. Support someone in your circle. A friend, a coworker, a loved one.  Reach out – listen, really listen.  Give someone you care about your time… let them have some of your time…  If stuff comes up for you, try to manage it and maybe deal with that later… maybe with another friend…
    • (I have to admit that this is a piece that I have to really work on… I had an instance this week where a friend shared a bit with me – the bit triggered me and I kinda spilled over… and they didn’t need to get spilled on… So – I know I need to do more listening… better listening and letting others have their time.)
  2. Do something special for someone you love. Do something special for yourself.  Make a handwritten Thank You card… or maybe make a dinner or get up early and make a breakfast for your loved one… Take the time to do something “on purpose” for yourself and for someone you love.
  3. Drink 3 8oz glasses of water every day… at least that much… Get hydrated…
  4. Take one day – and do your best to shut off the technology… give yourself a tech holiday… no TV, no tablet, no Facebook, no YouTube, no tech… maybe use that time to reconnect with someone…

I did better with my own challenge this week.  I really tried to listen to a buddy’s story.  I paid attention and resisted my urges to put in my two cents…  This is a piece that I really have to work on…

 

I did get a chance to make a meal for my best friend.  Now… it was one of my favs – but I am pretty certain that she enjoyed it as well.  Was good for me to do that… I know I need to do more of it.

 

The water piece is becoming a part of my day to day routine now.  I really think that ensuring that I’m hydrated makes a difference…

 

The technology holiday didn’t go that well for me… Its difficult in today’s world to leave this stuff alone… seems like everything I do is somehow related to tech.  I’m going to continue to be aware of the amount of technology I expose myself to… and try to reduce my screen time.


I was having a discussion with some friends this week.  We were just jawing about all sorts of things and the conversation came round to some statistics on firearms related deaths in Canada and the stat that the number one cause of firearms related deaths in Canada is suicide.  It’s a fact, it’s a stat… can’t deny it.  Our discussion went on to the absurdity of taking firearms away from everyone to try to stop the use of firearms as a tool for suicide.  We all pretty much agreed (and not all the participants in the conversation were firearms enthusiasts), that the confiscation of firearms isn’t the answer… seriously – if the lost seek to end their lives – they will use whatever tool is at their disposal to do so.  The answer to suicide the issue is increasing mental health care resourcing, decreasing stigma related to mental illness, and education.

As the conversation meandered along its path – one of my friends wondered how its possible to get that lost that one would want to not be alive anymore.  Unfortunately – the place and time where not right for me to share how that can happen.  How depression can beat a person into a place where their perception and therefore their reality (at the time) is that not being would be a better outcome for all concerned than being…  100% happens – and the statistics bare that out.

I certainly didn’t choose to have a depressive disorder.  I certainly didn’t choose to have an anxiety disorder, obsessive disorder, ADHD, or any of my other Ds… but I live with them.  Yes – I have been in such a dark, lonely, lost, cold, hurtful, sulfury, angry place within my experience that I have “been at risk”… Being at risk – a “safe” way of saying that I believed at some time that I would be better off not being at all.  That the world be simply be a better place without me in it.  Shitty huh… but that’s a truth.

So – how I got there and how I now work at keeping myself from being there is part of the very serious work that I do for myself and for anyone who wants to hear.  I share my story…

From my friend’s question “How does anyone get there?”, I know I have to continue to do what I do.  He was 100% sincere in his asking.  He deserves to hear how it can happen… how it can happen to anyone.  I invited him to take the opportunity to have a listen the next time I have an opportunity to share my journey.  I don’t know if he will… that’s totally up to him.. but his question reinforced my commitment to keep doing this.

I’m going to leave this here for the week…


My challenge for the week is:

  1. Identify the mental health supports available to you. They might be EAP, CMHA, your clergy, a friend, a counsellor or perhaps your family physician.  Just take a minute to make a note of the resources you have at your disposal should you ever need them.
    • If you are struggling – reach out to your resources. I KNOW – if you reach out for help, the help will reach back for you!  If you know someone who is struggling – take the chance – say something…
  2. Go for a walk if you can. Take some time for you, in nature.  Connect with the earth…. Ground yourself… Pay attention to the sound of your footsteps on the snow or the gravel or whatever.  Listen to the breeze in the trees… smell what ever is there…  If you can’t get out for a walk, take some time to connect with your senses and the world around you.
  3. Hug someone. Connect to someone in your “bubble”.  I know physical distancing and all that – but hopefully you have someone in your “bubble” that you can get a hug from.  Drink that connection in.  Feel them hugging you back.

 

That’s it…

 

I challenge you!