Saturday, 10 October 2015

Autumn Mental Health Update



Today is World Mental Health Day, and the theme of the day is dignity. It's a perfect time to reflect on my mental health during the last month and a half.

Back in early September, I made and shared with you all an Autumn to-do list! My history with ‘lists of things I want to do’ isn’t very good. In the Summer I misplaced and failed to complete a ‘How to Summer’ list. I felt like a failure and it took some time to get over.

However, my significantly shorted Autumn to-do list focused on attainable and achievable goals. From embracing the Pumpkin Spice Latte to baking, I was quick to get my tasks ticked off.
The season had me kept busy with my work commitments, but the list reminded me to take time out and do some things for me.

The result is a huge feeling of achievement. I look at that list and the silly things I could tick off (the Pumpkin Spice Latte) and the parts that required effort and commitment, like crafting and painting my tights, and I feel pride.
 My Autumn mental health has been very positive. I’m not going to jump to a wild conclusion and say it’s because of ticking off bits and bobs on a list, but hey, it’s helped.

Maybe it’s because of my August mental health ambitions I listed on the blog, but I’ve felt healthy and strong these past few weeks. Even my journal saw me contrast how unimportant I felt one year ago with how I feel now.

Last year was my first year post-college. University had been where I found myself, and my activities were how I defined myself. It was difficult to adjust, but during the past year I have.

Even this week when my anxiety has been through the roof this week. There was what we call the 'Luas incident' where I fainted on public transport on Monday. Every day struggling to get back on for my evening commute brought on chest pains and difficulty breathing. But I've been managing. I found a way to manage. I haven't felt myself slipping, yet alone falling into a depression. 

 So how do I feel this Autumn compared with last?
  •           That I have self worth
  •           That my self worth is based on more than what I did in college
  •          Comfortable with where I am career wise
  •          Confident with where I am going
  •      Focused
  •      Supported and Respected
I treat myself with respect self worth and I finally have the dignity that this day is all about. While the past year has included lots of ups and downs, it's brought a lot of positive changes. While jobs and relationships have fallen by the wayside, it's all been for the best. I've come out of it with life lessons and stronger than I was this time last year.

When it comes to mental health, how we see ourselves shapes our recovery. And treating ourselves with dignity plays a major part in that.

20 comments:

  1. Well done Zoë. ☺Gosh, I'm really anxious on public transport and in crowds and my fear is fainting. It's because I'm claustrophobic. Only for my breathing exercises I don't know how I'd cope. Keeping ticking that list x

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    1. Thank you Gloria! It can be totally overwhelming can't it? Must be so horrible for you being claustrophobic and having to cope with crowds in everyday life. Hope you're keeping well xx

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  2. Good for you for raising awareness about mental health issues. I have severe anxiety and depression and it stems from childhood issues. I have severe claustrophobia too and get anxiety attacks.

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  3. I am so glad that this autumn is feeling and looking like a much better one for you. Its so nice to hear the your ticking things off your list that you are able to do. Stay focused hun and all do well. x

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  4. Glad it's going so well. I find I need a little help in autumn as I hate to see summer leaving and the days shortening, even though I like the autumn colours.

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  5. It sounds very positive and its great you are raising awareness of mental health issues. I have never tried a pumpkin spiced latte - you have inspired me to go and find one :) the sound delicious x

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  6. Well done! You sound really positive!! I think having a list of goals is really helpful, it certainly helps me.Sorry o hear about the anxiety, I can relate to that. I am however glad you're having a good autumn and are more focused. Lovely post xx

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  7. You sound so positive which is wonderful , that must have been so scary I would be nervous about getting a bus too and I dont suffer with anxiety so good on you for not letting it get you down xx

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    1. Thank you. It was tough, but I do feel finally over it now x

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  8. I hope it's helped writing everything down, you are sounding very positive which is great :-)
    P.S. I love Pumpkin Spice Lattes!
    Sabrina xx

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    1. They might just be my favourite thing about the season :P x

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  9. It's great that you are feeling so much more positive this autumn compare to the last. I like the idea of making a list of attainable things to do, it is really disheartening when you make yourself a list of things to do and fail to achieve it, I've been doing the same recently and it does help!

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    1. Thanks Lauren, it really does help! Even the silly things like, 'Watch Hocus Pocus'. But it's a good practice of self care x

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  10. You deserve a huge pat on the back it's the little things tat make the difference. You should look up the most recent winner of great Britain bake off what she said when see won was inspiring. Enjoy life x

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  11. Well done you Zoe! It sounds like youve come so far in such a short time. Im sorry to hear about the public transport incident though. I have such a fear of public transport myself xx

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  12. Good for you and pleased to read that you are feeling positive. Lists make a massive difference to how I feel too and how I cope with stressful periods in my life. It just helps to get things out of my head and on to paper :)

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  13. There is this book by Tara Morh called 'Playing big' and it has some fantastic tips for ensuring that you treat yourself with self-worth and respect. We can be our own worst enemys and sabotage our own efforts all of the time. This book raises some wonderful points and makes you notice every time that you (or, I) do it. Its a great book!
    Great post, keep up the good work.
    Anna x

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