$#!+happens

This is everyone’s favourite quote when they can’t explain or want to justify something. In life we all go through ups and downs, that’s what life is. But when something negative happens, what is our perception, what do we think about it. Everyone has their way of coping with negative issues, some will; cry, get angry, withdraw in themselves, tell everyone (spilling), get up and carry on. For me I get upset, angry then brush myself off and move on.

Identifying your coping mechanisms, thoughts, feelings and behaviours when faced with a challenge or low point in life, can help you in the future. You are more likely to utilise all your tools and strategies that work. Mindfulness is an amazing tool which can help in so many ways. By focusing on your current present state, you are more likely to deal with your emotions/behaviours and gain control of yourself. It’s easy to get lost in our emotions and loose control. But taking the time to recognise it will help ease your stress levels.

Mindfulness can be done independently or with the aid of a secondary person. It helps put things into perspective and allow you take a step back and look at the problem from the outside. Allowing you the chance to realise the impact it has had on you.

Everyone has different coping mechanisms and level of tolerance. A person dealing with the reality they have been raped for example , this can often blur and alter your coping mechanisms. As what you thought would work, hasn’t and then you find yourself spiralling out of control, cognitively spilling and unable to get back control. In many ways you loose yourself in the process. You then reach a point in which you become so numb to how you feel you say “$#!+ happens”. NO. That quote highlights the fact you have given up hope and motivation to cope and get help. You have tried for so long and nothing has worked so you now accept this reality to be your life. NO.

No matter the severity of the negative issue, a person must always find a way to cope or deal with it. One way is to talk to someone, let them into your world and allow them access to your thoughts and feelings. In doing so the other person can understand to some extent the pain your going through. If they are aware they can maybe help and support you, using tools they have used themselves. Humanity is not a lone race but a collective, we feed off each other to survive. So turninlg to a person is going to help you.

World gives you a certain label which you live with for the rest of your life

Be careful of the label which you place on others such as; weird, stupid, odd, crazy, idiot or something more derogatory. These can be detrimental to their mental wellbeing or could reaffirm their own beliefs/fears. People can be very judgmental and place labels on others based on their ignorance, bias and fears. Labelling someone is placing a misconception or unwanted judgment on them without understanding the individual. They then perceive all of society sees them this way and will judge them before even getting to know them. This can lead to to social withdrawal and anxiety.

One main issue is the individual will begin to portray their label and they feel that’s the only way to manoeuvre in society free from further judgment. Causing the individual to feel more weighed down and overwhelmed by the label placed on them.

Many individuals such as those with mental health issues, can feel isolated and ashamed, due to the negative stigma and labels placed on them. Even though we are in the 21st Century, mental health is still a major taboo and is a topic of conversation not openly discussed. This can cause the individual to withdraw with themselves and cope with their pain by themselves.

You can find friends who see through the labels, to support you. We live in a very judgmental world where labelling someone is becoming more prevalent. Let’s make a change and tear down the notion of labelling people to mask our own insecurities and issues.

So we expect them to put a label on us or we label ourselves. This is to defend ourselves from the stigma attached to the label. If we presume this is what they are thinking, we can already begin to face it. For example someone who has a mental health diagnosis will call themselves “crazy”, offering the explanation “ I can say that as I’m crazy and they know I am”. Here the person is putting a label on themselves, as this is where they see themselves viewed in society.

It is hard to conduct in a confident way in a society where everything is stigmatised, judged and ridiculed. Any deviation from the “norm” is deemed “abnormal”. However ask yourself “ what does it mean to be normal?”.

In juxtaposition, some individuals will wear their label as a badge of honour and proudly confront society by showing their label to all. Again this is a coping mechanism, which one highlights they have an issue and two where they can hide behind it, almost a mask. For these individuals, the label/ stigma has been dealt with, leaving them scope to better deal with their concern.

If you place emphasis on an issue, everyone will notice. If you don’t place any emphasis, no one will know. This can refer to the label that maybe placed on a person. If you take the label and place a negative connotation on it, it will affect you. However if you embrace the label, then it won’t affect you.

Why did I do this to myself?

This is a question we ask ourselves all to often. This may equate to a decision we have made. In life we make many decisions, some that benefit us and others that may cause us grief or pain. As humans we make decisions almost every moment of our lives, from deciding what to get our bed, what to eat or more major life choices. At times we don’t realise the impact of the decisions, on our behaviour or emotions. We fail to realise is, the decisions we make in the split second may not have any thought behind them and therefore hindsight will serve us well.

When suffering from a mental health condition, every decision can be very difficult and impactful. The decision to wake up and start the day can be the biggest struggle they face. The impulsive nature of some actions such as to self harm or attempt suicide are not necessarily decisions but urges to be fulfilled. However once the urges has been fulfilled the sense of guilt, anger, regret and sadness occurs. Leading to sled harming behaviours which in term creates this endless cyclical affect, which we see in some individuals.

Sometimes we don’t understand why we have done something the 1st time and than a 2nd time it makes no sense at all. Here a person will realise that they may not be in control and giving in to impulsive behaviours to easily. A decision will have to made to manage these urges and gain control on their behaviour and feelings.

Many individuals feel they lose themselves and fear they are trapped in an endless cycle of bad decisions and negativity. However this may be lead by our own anxiety around these choices and emotions.

Dependent on the mental health condition, many individuals find it hard to regulate their emotions, the overwhelming nature of the behaviour which follows. This can cause them to spiral out of control and engage in risky behaviours.

However if support is given and understanding that we all have a decision, no matter how impulsive the behaviour can be. So if someone is struggling than it’s important to remind them of the steps and decisions they have taken that day to reach that point; getting out of bed, eating some food and talking to someone etc. As we forget the small decisions we do and only focus on the bigger decision, this makes us forget the positive nature of every decision.

Talking therapies, mindfulness, CBT or DBT are all effective therapies which can assist in acknowledging the negative thoughts and increased anxiety. Attempting to face the problem and to help cope with your feelings and thoughts.

A person should never feel the choices they make were wrong, should be the opposite, acknowledge the decision and learn from it. Also to use the coping mechanism that aid a them when they feel overwhelmed and see no other solution.