Today is World Suicide Prevention Day, and I wanted to take this moment to say that it is okay to not be okay. I said the same thing back in grad school, and I will continue to say it until my dying day.
It’s okay to feel things, especially when working through trauma. Trust me when I say it is messy and you will feel all of the things, and in many different stages.
I also wanted to say healing isn’t linear. Do not compare your journey to anyone else’s.
While society has improved its receptiveness to the topic of mental health, we still have a ways to go.
If you had a cough or sore throat you would go to the doctor. So why wouldn’t you go if you felt sad, apathetic, or like you were in a funk?
There is no shame in getting help.
And even if things feel amazing, there’s still no shame in doing a check-in.
I love myself, and my life, and I’m overall stress-free. I am pretty content these days if I do say so myself. But I still go to therapy.
Earlier in the year, I blogged about that experience and how I treat my body like the luxury sports car that it is. But if you missed that one, or don’t feel like scrolling back, let me repeat:
When you get a new vehicle, you take it in for preventative maintenance and upkeep. You don’t wait until shit hits the fan and you break down in rush hour. So why wouldn’t you treat your mind the same?
Poor mental health can increase your risk of chronic infection or make fighting off illnesses more difficult. Anxiety or depression can impact your gut health, bringing on side effects such as difficulty losing weight or persistent abdominal cramping.
So what does this all mean?
For starters, put yourself first.
You are not selfish for making yourself a priority. You give others so much love, and isn’t it time that you gave yourself some of that same love?
My dear friend Liz is a double board-certified Psychiatrist who is passionate about the work she does. Every time we speak, I am blown away and inspired. Our full conversation on mental health can be found here.
“You are not alone, and there are multiple pathways for you to get the help that you both need and deserve. Taking that very first step toward improving your mental health might very well save your life.“Elizabeth Ucheoma-Cofield, MD
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Board Certified
Adult Psychiatry, Board Certified
In case you need some crucial reminders (as we all do):
- You’re doing amazing
- You matter
- You belong
- Stop saying sorry
- Say no
- Create and enforce boundaries
- Don’t give up
My inbox is always open if you need to vent or talk.
But if that’s not your jam, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7. They offer help in English and Spanish. You can reach them directly at 800-273-8255
Looking for some more mental health encouragement? Check out today’s podcast episode below! Remember: you are not alone. Your brightest days are still ahead.