Money can affect self-esteem, but basing self-esteem on external factors, like your financial situation, is risky. Our external circumstances can change wildly and unexpectedly. So when your opinion of yourself is wrapped up in what you have or don’t have –- and you compare these externals to others -– your self-esteem becomes very unstable. You become easily crushed. Money is one of those external factors that many of us latch onto for a sense of validation. And it can interact with our self-esteem in a variety of ways.
Anxiety and laziness seem unseemly because social pressure tells us it’s not okay to be lazy -- or anxious. We tend to value productivity and activity – if we don’t get as much out of the day as we can, we can be looked down upon. However, anxiety and laziness can go together, and it's okay to be lazy when you're anxious.
Knowing how to give mental health first aid for suicide prevention is important for everyone, but we often don't know how to do it. After graduating from a community college in 2014, I accepted a position as a peer support specialist at a local mental health agency. Prior to this job, I worked at a group home, and the training was very similar -- first aid, CPR, and nonviolent crisis intervention. However, my new position also required Mental Health First Aid, a formal eight-hour course on how to respond to someone in crisis. The Mental Health First Aid intervention can be crucial in suicide prevention and getting someone the appropriate help they need.
Self-compassion practices are often overlooked in our discussion of self-care. Most of us acknowledge the importance of engaging in self-care to maintain our physical, mental, and emotional wellness. When we talk about self-care, we often refer to engaging in fun, or relaxing activities. While that is certainly an important aspect of self-care, there is another equally important element that we often ignore: self-compassion practices are also part of self-care.
Perfectionism isn’t something that is often associated with borderline personality disorder (BPD). Those of us with this diagnosis of BPD can often be perceived as out of control and chaotic, so what does that have to do with perfectionism? From my experience, there is a relationship between BPD and perfectionism that can impact all areas of our lives. Perfectionism crept into my body image, my personal relationships, and my academic and professional endeavors. It stems from the black-and-white thinking or "splitting" within borderline personality disorder. In the video below, I’ll share a little bit more about how BPD perfectionism has impacted my body image, relationships, and professional life.
Overcoming challenges when you live with bipolar is part of self-care. As someone living with bipolar 2, I have realized the importance of acknowledging my fears and taking the proper steps to overcome them.
Who can get an eating disorder? The answer may surprise you because, for decades, the cultural perception of eating disorders has been whitewashed in the media and characterized as an issue that only affects Caucasian, heterosexual women. But this narrow understanding is biased, warped, and problematic. In reality, around 30 million Americans struggle with disordered eating behaviors, and just a fraction of this number are actually white. These illnesses transcend racial, ethnic, gender, and sexual orientation boundaries, causing a universal epidemic which threatens every demographic. But the prevailing mythos that eating disorders are only present in white culture negates the experience of marginalized people and often alienates them from seeking treatment. So how can society address this whitewashed perception of eating disorders and broaden the narrative to include those from other backgrounds too? Who can get an eating disorder? Anyone.
After my father's death, it was really hard for me to celebrate his birthday. Celebrations are typically happy times you spend honoring people who are alive. For several years, not being able to celebrate with my father on his birthday made me not want to celebrate at all. But a few years ago, I realized that I could honor him by celebrating his life from when he was alive. Here are five ways I honored him this year.