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Our Mental Health Blogs

How to Cope If Hashtag #Metoo Triggers Trauma Memories

How to Cope If Hashtag #Metoo Triggers Trauma Memories

Hashtag #metoo triggered trauma memories for some. You're not alone: Even positive events meant to empower can trigger trauma memories. Here's how to cope.

Even positive events can trigger trauma memories sometimes. This week, the hashtag #metoo flooded social media accounts to demonstrate the widespread problem of sexual assault and harassment. We witnessed a multitude of voices share deep-seated shame and anxiety associated with trauma. Whether through a simple #metoo or a painful story, we unloaded our burdens. While freeing for many, the hashtag could have triggered trauma memories for some.

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Abuse, Anxiety and Mental Health (A Short Film)

Abuse, Anxiety and Mental Health (A Short Film)

I’m sharing this deeply moving, powerful short film not simply because abuse is a topic around which there cannot be too much awareness but because anxiety doesn’t come from nowhere. Abuse isn’t the only cause (there are many, even if you have been abused) but the effects of abuse are inseparable from mental health, whether or not you have a clinically diagnosable mental illness.

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The New Science of Sleep: Nightmares and Anxiety

The New Science of Sleep: Nightmares and Anxiety

Sometimes I get woken up by anxiety-causing nightmares which isn’t so odd, what with the PTSD n’all (Understanding PTSD Nightmares and Flashbacks). Full-on sweating through my pyjamas in a very non-sexy manner nightmares, so what do I do? Rollover and go back to sleep. You might be tempted to ask why I cope with nightmares like that, but I doubt I’m alone in the answer.

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Overcoming Anxiety: Determination

Overcoming Anxiety: Determination

Determination helps me overcome anxiety. White-knuckled stubbornness. Hours spent thinking to myself, “anxiety cannot win.” Sometimes this is rather like yelling at the sea to stop making so many waves but in spite of that, it works for me. For a trait that’s usually frowned upon stubbornness, determination has its uses when you’re overcoming anxiety.

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Anxiety Denied Is Not Anxiety Extinguished

Anxiety Denied Is Not Anxiety Extinguished

Fear denied, repressed, suppressed, or put out of mind is not fear extinguished.

Treating anxiety: ‘as if’

I’ve been told that acting ‘as if’ I’m not nearly as anxious as I am is a helpful thing. It’s also dangerous. As with almost any technique sometimes is fine but if you’re anything like me and you’ll do whatever you have to do to be able to put your anxiety aside and function, and if what you want is to go on with as much of life as you can, uninterrupted by fear, then it can become destabilizing.

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The Real Health Cost of Anxiety Disorders

The Real Health Cost of Anxiety Disorders

Happy is what brings healthy, and viceversa, so it can’t be that much of a surprise anxiety and depression have had some pretty rough consequences on my health; High blood pressure at 25, on-and-off flings with anemia, near-constant sleep deprivation.

I may as well have an imp bouncing up and down on my kidneys whilst someone tells my nervous system to pump out all the stress hormones its got, so I can feel normal, or at least prepared. Like a Girl Scout on crack. That’s PTSD hypervigilance for you.
It’s also that sometimes our bodies express what we are otherwise unwilling, or unable to say.

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Mental Illness and Other People’s Standards

Mental Illness and Other People’s Standards

On acceptance, anxiety and guilt

Life with mental illness isn’t always fun. Not just because I have a real illness, and that real illness really does affect my life but because some folks have trouble accepting this. I’m not entirely sure why except they don’t like the thought that someone with mental illness can “zomg, look just like them,” and still be quite unwell.

That’s the thing about invisible illness: Once revealed, people around you may feel conned, manipulated, lied to. Even though you’ve done nothing wrong.

Yeah, I’m guilty of being unwell in the general vicinity, of having mental health issues and having a life anyway. Sorry about that. Next time I’ll wear my “mentally interesting” t-shirt so you can detect the crazy, before it gets in your Coke.
*passes the tin-foil hat*

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It’s Not Like I Can Say, “Well, I Only Have a Little Bit of PTSD”.

It’s Not Like I Can Say, “Well, I Only Have a Little Bit of PTSD”.

Even after all this talking, and doing, fixing, and mulling-over, and redoing, I still find that I go through stages of really, really disliking dealing with myself, all this: the anxiety.

  • I worry about the things that maybe I can’t fix.

That’s potentially the hardest thing to face about the words which preface my diagnosis; It isn’t PTSD. It’s ‘chronic, severe’ PTSD.

So you see, there’s really no getting out of it. I can’t say, “well, I only have a little post traumatic stress,” or “Anxiety only gets this bit of my life!”. It gets rather a lot, actually. And people with anxiety disorders don’t get nearly enough say about it. Not. nearly. enough.

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Helpless, Hopeless? It Doesn’t Have to Always Be That Way

Helpless, Hopeless? It Doesn’t Have to Always Be That Way

I come up against this wall plenty, in treating anxiety: Combating the sense of hopelessness, of powerlessness, that only too often accompanies the worst symptoms of anxiety disorders.

  • How do I not get stuck when simply feeling things seems way above my pay grade?

“If you know neither yourself nor your enemy,
you will always endanger yourself.”

The Art of War

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Is Anxiety Toxic? Mind-Body Solutions to Stress?

Is Anxiety Toxic? Mind-Body Solutions to Stress?

  • Is panic emotional pollution?

Running on adrenaline, cortisol -the fear center of the brain staging neurochemical warfare on your nervous system- is the equivalent of climate change. It’s dangerous. It’s doing your whole system damage you can’t even see: Forests for trees.

Anxiety: I can’t stand it anymore

Anxiety alters the way our minds and bodies respond to stress so that it’s harder, in the long term, to return to a state of calm and restfulness.

I can’t stand it anymore. If you have an anxiety disorder, you know what I mean.

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