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How to Stay Strong While Battling Mental Illness

anxiety, depression, How to Stay Strong While Battling Mental Illness, mental illness,

I’m definitely not a doctor, so I certainly cannot speak to the medical side of mental illness, but I have known many people who have dealt with it. The stigmas that surround mental illness are pretty intense and dealing with it is a whole other battle. When you suffer from mental illness or you have a family member, friend or someone close to you battling it, you see and experience first hand how difficult it can be. But, here’s the thing: YOU aren’t your illness. Your friend or family member is not his or her illness. YOU are a person, they are people and that’s what you need to remember. If this is something you’re dealing with and your confused and having trouble staying strong, know this – you aren’t alone. Let’s talk about a few ways you can find strength in the toughest battle.

How to Stay Strong While Battling Mental Illness

anxiety, depression, How to Stay Strong While Battling Mental Illness, mental illness,

Remind yourself that you’ve made it this far. Not everyone has to battle something as difficult as mental illness, but you do and you’ve dealt with it as best you can. Pat yourself on the back, give yourself a hug – you deserve it. It’s OK to give yourself some praise, it’s not easy to walk this walk, but you have – head held high.

Forget the stigma that comes with it, you know what you’re dealing with and that’s all that matters. Just because the world cannot see mental illness doesn’t mean it isn’t real. It’s VERY real. You know that, your loved ones know that. Trust yourself to know when you need a day off from work or you have to take some time to rest and relax, mental illness is as taxing and as exhausting as any physical illness. You have the right to give yourself some self-care.

Keep on keeping on with therapy and treatment. You have a wealth of doctors, treatment facilities, medications, family, friends, therapists, support groups – all who are there to help. Accept that help. It’s takes a village sometimes and that is OK. Lean on family. Lean on friends. Accept the advice of therapists, doctors and support groups – many have been there before and many can help you find a sense of peace and normalcy in a life that often feels hectic and overwhelming.

Give yourself a break every once in a while. Not every day is going to be the best day. Not every treatment is going to work. Not every therapist is going to be the right fit. Not every friend or family member is going to understand. It’s tough. There are up days, but there are many down days. Don’t feel bad about giving yourself a little break. You’ll find a rhythm that works for you. Sometimes it’ll be fast paced and some days it will be OK to slow things down. Just remember, this is your life. These are your decisions. Do what works for you.

Don’t give up. No matter what, there’s always a bright side and there’s always going to be someone there to help. Sometimes help comes in the most simple forms: a hug, a coffee date, a walk in the park on a beautiful day – take those opportunities to remind yourself that despite the tough times, life is beautiful and it’s yours to make the most of.

Have you or someone close to you struggled with mental illness? How do you stay strong when things get really tough?