The Importance of Mental Health

The Importance of Mental Health

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MENTAL HEALTH IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS PHYSICAL HEALTH.

This is the first point I want to get across to everyone interested in reading this.

Lets say you just recently got injured and cannot get out of bed to go to work. Yes, that is a reasonable excuse to call in sick. Now, lets say your anxiety is acting up one morning and your body decides to have a panic attack and will not let you step out in public. Why is this not always considered a valid reason as to why you should be able to call in sick? Why isn't being sick mentally taken just as serious as being sick physically? Is it because you may not be able to physically see how depressed someone is or be able to actually hear the thoughts that are eating them alive? My answer would be because not enough people are aware and informed of the seriousness of mental health and most people do not realize things until it is too late.

I bet a lot of the people around you can give you a list of ways to try to treat a common cold, but could they give you a list just as long of ways to help someone having a panic attack? Think about it. There is no reason as to why physical health should be put before mental health, yet, so many people know little to nothing about it. If someone doesn't know the seriousness of something they don't have much reasoning as to why they would be interested in the topic until it affects their lives in someway. Which makes sense, but also gives more reason as to why people all around the world need to be informed on mental health because IT IS SO IMPORTANT.

It would be beneficial for students to learn about it while they are growing up in grade school so they are well aware earlier on as to what steps to take to help a friend, family member, peer, or even themselves before it is too late. When I was in 6th grade my brother committed suicide at the age of 24. At the time that it happened, I didn't really understand what was going on or as to why anyone would take their own life. I wish that I would have been more aware of what was going on and what had happened at the time. Over time, I reflect on the situation and realize more and more as I get older, but I still sit and wonder why. I want others to be aware of the importance of mental health in hopes of a chance for others to help those in need. Losing a loved one is hard, losing a loved one unexpectedly is a different story.

The earlier people are informed and aware, the greater chance there is of helping someone in need. We've all been overwhelmed, stressed, and worried. The level of extent of these emotions and situations vary with every person. Some may say they just need some space for themselves while others may feel as they have already been pushed over their edge. It hurts knowing someone around you or even yourself is suffering, but being able to take action and help someone else or help yourself is such a great feeling. I am advocating for mental health to be taken more seriously in order to create healthier and happier lives for everyone, and if you weren't before, I hope you are now because...

MENTAL HEALTH IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS PHYSICAL HEALTH.

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I'm The Girl Without A 'Friend Group'

And here's why I'm OK with it

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Little things remind me all the time.

For example, I'll be sitting in the lounge with the people on my floor, just talking about how everyone's days went. Someone will turn to someone else and ask something along the lines of, "When are we going to so-and-so's place tonight?" Sometimes it'll even be, "Are you ready to go to so-and-so's place now? Okay, we'll see you later, Taylor!"

It's little things like that, little things that remind me I don't have a "friend group." And it's been like that forever. I don't have the same people to keep me company 24 hours of the day, the same people to do absolutely everything with, and the same people to cling to like glue. I don't have a whole cast of characters to entertain me and care for me and support me. Sometimes, especially when it feels obvious to me, not having a "friend group" makes me feel like a waste of space. If I don't have more friends than I can count, what's the point in trying to make friends at all?

I can tell you that there is a point. As a matter of fact, just because I don't have a close-knit clique doesn't mean I don't have any friends. The friends I have come from all different walks of life, some are from my town back home and some are from across the country. I've known some of my friends for years, and others I've only known for a few months. It doesn't really matter where they come from, though. What matters is that the friends I have all entertain me, care for me, and support me. Just because I'm not in that "friend group" with all of them together doesn't mean that we can't be friends to each other.

Still, I hate avoiding sticking myself in a box, and I'm not afraid to seek out friendships. I've noticed that a lot of the people I see who consider themselves to be in a "friend group" don't really venture outside the pack very often. I've never had a pack to venture outside of, so I don't mind reaching out to new people whenever.

I'm not going to lie, when I hear people talking about all the fun they're going to have with their "friend group" over the weekend, part of me wishes I could be included in something like that. I do sometimes want to have the personality type that allows me to mesh perfectly into a clique. I couldn't tell you what it is about me, but there is some part of me that just happens to function better one-on-one with people.

I hated it all my life up until very recently, and that's because I've finally learned that not having a "friend group" is never going to be the same as not having friends.

SEE ALSO: To The Girls Who Float Between Friend Groups

Cover Image Credit: wordpress.com

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Your Health Journey Is A Marathon, Not A Sprint

Perfection takes time.

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When you first start to do something, you have all of the motivation in the world to accomplish that goal set out in front of you, especially when it comes to being healthier. The problem is as you continue through this journey and food and laziness kick in, motivation slips. It's human, and it happens to everyone no matter how physically strong they are.

Trying to be healthier doesn't always mean losing weight. It can be so your knees don't ache as much, so you don't feel as out of breath climbing stairs, or any goal you have set for yourself. Being healthier is personal and different from person to person.

I will be the first to admit that there are plenty of changes I would love to make about myself. From my weight to my body type and many other things about myself inside and out. I am by no means the most confident person about how I look, but I have worked hard for the past year to be an overall healthier person.

Becoming healthier isn't about looking thinner or fitting into a specific size of clothes. It is about taking care of yourself from eating better to working out more. There comes a feeling of confidence in what your body can do if you put a little love in it.

Perfection takes time, and I know firsthand how frustrating trying to be healthier can be.

Pizza tastes so much better than salad. It is so easy to fall into a rhythm of something that seems never to change whether that is your weight or your mile time. Sadly, you can't build a city, or become healthier overnight.

We see people who are thinner, curvier, smarter, faster, and so much more than us. We all waste time comparing ourselves to people around us and on our timelines, but some of our biggest strengths are our individuality and the gift of getting back up after falling down.

All I can say is, please don't give up on your goal of being healthier because this is solely for you. We can have a great support system in the world and have everyone in our corner, but that isn't enough.

You need yourself. You need to know that if you don't entirely put yourself in this journey, then you won't fully succeed. Your commitment to bettering yourself can keep you going even if you want to give up.

Your motivation may not be at its peak level right now, and you may have every cell in your body screaming at you to quit. Don't do it. Prove to yourself that you can keep going no matter what. Not giving up will be worth it. The results and taking the hard way will make you a stronger person inside and out.

You can do this. You can do anything you want to accomplish if you just believe in yourself. You need to understand that becoming healthier takes endurance. There will be periods where you slow down and may not be going at your fastest pace. The difference is that you are not giving up and you are still trying and moving.

Don't treat becoming healthier as a sprint: short term and quick. That mentality will only leave you feeling deflated and defeated. It is a life-long marathon of pacing yourself and pushing yourself further than ever before.

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