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11 Oct 2018

Looking after others & yourself | #worldmentalhealthday

As you probably know, yesterday was world mental health day so I thought I would take the opportunity to talk a little about mental health on my blog. It would be totes more appropriate if I posted this on the actual day but y'know me, I ain't the most organised gal! 

The increased awareness around mental health due to days like this is SO important. When you look at someone you can only see what is visible to the eye and sometimes that's all we consider. In today's hectic and fast-paced society it is so easy to just focus on our own lives and problems without giving others a second thought. Days like this remind us  that someone could be suffering an internal struggle we know nothing about.

I am incredibly fortunate to have never suffered from any mental health problems. I know how common the likes of anxiety and depression are so I count my blessings that I've never been affected (of course I feel anxious sometimes and have down days but it's not the same). However, I am aware that I have to keep it that way and look after my mind. Not all of us suffer from mental health problems but every one of us has a mental health that we need to look after, in the same way, we look after our physical health.

So what can we do to - 

1. consider that others may be going through a tough time?

2. maintain our own mental health? 

Well, to me, the answer is simple - be kind.

Imagine a world where everyone was more kind to each other? 

It really is so easy to be more kind. 

It's as simple as saying 'please' and 'thank you' to a cashier, as smiling when you lock eyes with a stranger, asking how your colleagues are and initiating conversations about their lives, it's as simple as asking your loved ones how their day was and being genuinely interested. 

Basically, what I am trying to say is even if you're having a bad day don't be a dick to someone else, it could be enough to send them over the edge. 

Instead make an effort to just be nicer, more understanding and approachable to someone should they ever need to talk to you. It all comes down to not being selfish and being aware of peoples feelings. 

Everyone has a life story, they have thoughts, worries, insecurities and fears, be gentle with them.

Kindness is also essential when trying to look after your own mental health. We've all heard the saying 'if you wouldn't say it to a friend, don't say it to yourself' and guys, this is so true. 

I sometimes have negative thoughts about myself and I say insulting things to myself that I would never say to anyone else. Almost instantly after I have these thoughts I think to myself 'Sinead, be kinder to yourself, you're doing the best you can' I am consciously aware I am doing it, how damaging they could be and I nip it in the bud before it starts to really get under my skin and affect me mentally. 

After all, you are the most important person in your own life. You are the only person you have to spend every minute of every day with so you have to be kind to yourself and treat yourself with love.


Sinéad x

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