Mental Wellness Challenge
2021, October 29
It’s been a bit since I posted. I’ve been distracted.
In my last post I challenged you to:
- Spend an hour of your time doing something for yourself. Take a nice hot bath, get a manicure, go for a walk, pet your dog, sit in stillness – just be super intentional that you are taking that hour of time for yourself, on purpose.
- Spend an hour of your time doing something for someone you care about. Make a meal, be an understanding ear or an open heart, clean your partners car, whatever – it doesn’t have to be anything super unique – but be CERTAIN OF YOUR INTENTION, spend that hour out of caring.
- Take a moment and do something kind for a total stranger. Hold the door, plug a parking meter, anything – but be intentional that you are giving that person a moment of your life – your time.
How did you do?
On spending an hour of time doing something for myself – I did OK. I wasn’t as intentional as I should have/could have been. I’ve had “distraction and inattention” inattention issues more than usual lately. Anyway, I did take some time to do stuff for me.
On doing something for someone I care about – I did well. I took time to do some stuff for a good friend. I felt good going the extra mile for him. Giving my time to my friend helped me charge up my sense of self-worth.
I made certain that I shared some kindness someone I didn’t know. I have no idea whether the recipient of my actions even had any idea that I did what I did, and that’s fine. My giving was more about my heart and me giving without any expectation of acknowledgement.
My journey over the past while has me feeling a little tattered. I’ve been experiencing more physical discomfort than I am used to. Perhaps – in some time – I’ll get used to it… At this point – I have to accept that the back and leg pain I have are with me… part of my experience and I’ll have to build a new “normal”. The bigger piece of the “pain in the….” is really the distraction that it causes to me. In this – I know I am not alone…
I had the opportunity to share my mental health journey, my “first steps out of the darkness” with some young people this last week. In my sharing I REALLY realized that I haven’t been very diligent with following my own wellness model lately. Sharing some of the sense of hopelessness that I experienced and my finding hope (HANG ON – PAIN ENDS), then from there sharing the experience of the very capable and professional folks that took my hand and helped guide me out of my darkness… well – that sharing helped me realize that I have been forgetting (perhaps ignoring is a better word) my wellness model… because you see, my wellness model takes effort…
I was really reminded that I am the only person who can change my experience. That I have a real responsibility for what I do with the “stuff” that happens in my life. Sharing my wellness model reminded me of the strength that the model has (as a treatment) in my living with my mental wellness challenges. So I know I have to get my poop together and get back to being more attentive to my mental health.
Michel de Montaigne is quoted – “So it is with minds. Unless you keep them busy with some definite subject that will bridle and control them, they throw themselves in disorder hither and yon in the vague field of imagination… And there is no mad or idle fancy that they do not bring forth in the agitation.”
And it is my experience – especially with my ADD/ADHD – that if I don’t intentionally maintain a focus on something – my mind goes to all sorts of unwanted places… working at keeping my attention intentionally on my wellness model helps me stay out of those – dark places. If Montaigne’s words apply to a neuro typical person – they apply 10 fold to me with all of my “Ds”.
I’ve also had the opportunity to take part in a forum/workshop in my workplace since I’ve posted last. This workshop was focused on the workplace and moving our workplace forward. I was fortunate to be seated at a table with some really bright folks – (I found myself feeling very much the octagonal peg amongst the others…) I participated as best I could. One of the pieces of learning that was shared at our table was the “Not Myself” campaign that our little college is working on. AWESOME! This was such great and welcome news for me! More people acknowledging mental health and wellbeing. This was a very exciting thing for me.
One of my passions is bringing mental health, mental wellness, mental illness into the light. My experience is that I tend to be afraid of the things I don’t understand or can’t see… If I shine a light into the darkness – I grow an understanding of what is there. I know I am not alone with this… it’s a truth for many folks. So – having a program in the workplace that gets people thinking about how they are feeling, what’s going on with them, and having an appreciation and growing empathy for others is awesome! I am really looking forward to taking part in that program. I’ll share a link to the Canadian Mental Health Associations resources for “Not Myself Today” here.
My mental wellness challenge this week is:
- Take a few minutes and answer the question “How am I doing?” There’s no right or wrong answer here – just take a minute to two for self check.
- Explore a facet of mental health that you aren’t familiar with. Take some time, just little time, to do a bit of research.
- Look for three things in your experience that you are truly grateful for. Acknowledge those things. Maybe take a moment and write down what they are and why you are grateful for them…
That’s it for now…
I challenge you!