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Our Mental Health Blogs

Coping with a Diagnosis of Mental Illness

Coping with a Diagnosis of Mental Illness

Coping with a diagnosis of mental illness can be scary. I felt fear and eventually relief when I was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder. Here's how I cope.

Coping with a diagnosis of a mental illness can be scary, but if you’ve made it to this point, it means you’ve reached out for help. That’s a great first step. You’re on your way to receiving treatment and most likely feeling better. It’s important to cope with mental illness, and it’s important to cope with the diagnosis of mental illness–accepting the illness–too.

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Three Reasons People Self-Injure and How to Resist Self-Harm

Three Reasons People Self-Injure and How to Resist Self-Harm

The reasons people self-injure vary, but there are many ways to reign in self-harm to develop better coping skills. Learn reasons for self-harm and how to stop.

Many people with mental illness have their reasons to self-injure but it’s important to resist self-harm urges. While most commonly associated with borderline personality disorder (BPD), self-harm can occur with any mental illness. There are three reasons people self-injure: to punish themselves, to feel something instead of nothing, and to feel stronger.

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Manage Self-Harm Urges with the Calm Harm App

Manage Self-Harm Urges with the Calm Harm App

You may be able to manage self-harm urges with the Calm Harm application, or app. Recently, a counselor shared this app with me. Calm Harm, a British app, is designed to help people of all ages deal with self-harm urges. It mainly does this by inviting the user to “ride the wave”–self-harm, the app says, is like a wave–strongest when you want to do it, and then weaker with time. The app then provides suggestions, a timer, and feedback on how you handle self-injury. It’s an interesting app for anyone, but I cannot recommend it strongly enough for someone who struggles with self-injury. Here is how you can manage self-harm urges using the app.

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Therapy Works If You Put In the Effort

Therapy Works If You Put In the Effort

Therapy works if you put in the effort. Recently I learned that my brother, an active alcoholic, agreed to go to counseling. I hope and pray that it helps. But he has issues with therapists and the last time he went to counseling he held it all in, so nothing changed. That’s not helpful at all and is a waste of time. It’s like the joke about how many therapists it takes to change a light bulb: “Only one, but the bulb has to really want to change.” Therapy works if you put in the effort–but if you don’t, the best therapist in the world won’t be able to help.

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Mental Health Advice From a Tarot Reading

Mental Health Advice From a Tarot Reading

Recently I got mental health advice from a tarot reading. I’ll be the first to admit I’m skeptical about tarot (Alternative Mental Health Information). But recently I got a reading that was empowering. The reading had three pieces of mental health advice I will share since they’re good for everyone to know.

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How to Recover from an Abusive Relationship

How to Recover from an Abusive Relationship

Do you know how to recover from an abusive relationship? No one wakes up one day and says, “I think I’ll fall in love with someone who abuses me.” Most relationships don’t become abusive, and most abusive relationships don’t become abusive until the relationship is well-established. And lack of violence does not mean lack of abuse (Effects of Emotional Abuse on Adults). Breaking it off is the most dangerous part, but what comes after that? Do victims know how to recover from an abusive relationship?

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Pokemon Go Can Help Mental Illness Recovery

Pokemon Go Can Help Mental Illness Recovery

Pokemon Go can help with mental illness recovery. Unless you’ve been living under a Kabuto the past few weeks, you’re aware that Pokemon Go has gone viral (How a Video Game Gave Me My Life Back). But did you know Pokemon Go can help with mental illness recovery? Here are three ways Pokemon Go can help with mental illness recovery.

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Self-Harm Recovery and the 12 Steps

Self-Harm Recovery and the 12 Steps

Self-injury can be addictive but you can recover from self-harm using the 12 steps, among other ways. Because self-harm helps us feel better, even if it is a negative coping skill, it can become a habit. We can become powerless over self-injury. But, like any addiction, a 12-step program can be useful in fighting self-harm behavior and aid self-harm recovery.

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Can Diet Affect Mental Health?

Can Diet Affect Mental Health?

Can diet affect mental health? I went vegetarian for Lent this year. One thing I noticed is how much better I felt–I wasn’t exhausted in the morning, I had more energy than normal, my head felt clear, and my mood was pretty much even all the time. It left me wondering “Can diet affect mental health?” And, if so, what dietary changes do we need to consider?

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How Gut Health Affects Mental Health

How Gut Health Affects Mental Health

Do you know how gut health affects mental health? My psychiatrist once told me that gastroenterologists call the gut “the second brain” because it has such a powerful impact on one’s mental health. For example, constipation (a side effect of many psychiatric medications) can cause the body to kick into fight-flight-freeze mode, which causes racing thoughts, fear, and panic (Mental Health And Physical Health Aren’t Separate Concepts). So it is important to know how gut health affects mental health.

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