This year, I started training for a particularly ambitious fitness goal: a 10-day trek in the Himalayan Mountains. In October 2023, I will travel to Nepal and embark on the adventure of a lifetime, but first, I need to acclimate to hiking in extreme weather conditions at the highest altitude on earth. That's no small feat for someone who lives in Phoenix, Arizona, a desert with minimal elevation.
You may remember me as the blogger who wrote for "Work and Bipolar or Depression" or "Coping with Depression" here at HealthyPlace. While blogging on this platform has been a career highlight, I took time off from writing about depression for my mental health. Now that I am better, I feel grateful for the opportunity to write for "Mental Health for The Digital Generation." Although I wish I had never left, I know why I needed to do so: we live in a chaotic world where regular mental health breaks are essential.
In 1999, when I was in fifth grade, a police officer came to our school dressed in a Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) t-shirt. He was carrying a gun and wearing a stern face. Without any words, he communicated that using drugs led to extreme consequences. His lecture taught us that drug addicts deserve to be locked up. But criminalizing addiction turned out to be more hurtful than helpful.
Have you ever had a moment that makes you question every bit of recovery you’ve achieved to that point? I have—recently, I questioned my skin picking recovery.
Looking back at all my past problems from where I am today, it's often hard to remember just how low I felt. It's hard to remember the many years I spent stuck in a vicious cycle of anxiety, panic attacks, and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), not knowing if I would ever be able to break free and live a happy and fulfilling life again. There were intermittent periods of depression when I was unable to see any reason for existence. Thankfully, those days are over.
I have had many people talk to me about struggling with low self-confidence and negative self-talk and how hard it has been for them to train themselves to stop letting negative emotions control their lives. For years, I, too, struggled with these feelings. Self-criticism was a daily practice, and I would find fault in everything I did.
Navigating verbal abuse is never ideal. This toxic behavior can alter how a person sees and trusts others and interacts in relationships. The amount of exposure to verbal abuse can drastically change a person's view or attitude toward themselves and others. This situation is one I'm familiar with since I can see now that verbal abuse has changed me.
Since I have arthritis in my knees and schizoaffective disorder, the migraines I suffer are a substantial extra load. And now I know what it’s like to have my physical illnesses treated more seriously than my mental illness. This is the story of a time when I stood up for my mental health, and my mental illness was treated seriously.
I've learned that it's difficult to fight self-doubt when you are often anxious. Unfortunately, naturally, anxiety and self-doubt go hand in hand. Because of this, my anxiety can affect my decision-making. In other words, when trying to make a choice, I often doubt myself and my ability to make a good decision.
When I spent three months in residential treatment back in 2010, the clinicians would frequently encourage the other patients and me to communicate and honor our needs. This practice was meant to teach us how to separate our own inner voices from the control and influence of an eating disorder. As well-intentioned as these clinicians were, however, I remember asking myself: "How can I learn to express my needs if I'm not sure what they are?"
Thank you for your comments and question.
I think you would need to ask a counselor or doctor to get an excellent response to how to help someone in a crisis (psychosis).
Thank you for watching the video and for your support!
Also, are you me? Haha! I feel like you've written exactly what I've been struggling with, word for word. I'm really trying to get myself to express my opinions and speak out rather than conform. It's been affecting me everywhere in my life and I've been looking for ways to overcome it. Speaking out during an injustice has also been a challenge as there have been many times when I don't and feel extremely awful later. Thank you for your points, I shall try writing to express myself better.
What I do now is I try and start conversations with close friends who have very polarizing views from me as I find it easier to debate on topics that I have very strong opinions on. Hopefully, that will help me in situations where a smaller opinion would be something I express with others too.
It's been a while since you've written your article. Have you been able to overcome most of your anxieties and express your opinions better now? I really hope you have! Have you found other methods to overcome them than the ones you've mentioned already? Thank you for your time!
My mouth taste weird to haven't Sowers ether so I can try to have DNA on me needed to tell somebody