I’ve struggled a fair bit mentally at the hands of my chronic illnesses. Sadly poor mental health can be a side effect of having a chronic illness, but it’s okay to struggle. I really wish that I’d know some of these things when I’ve gone through rough patches, but I’m hoping that some of you will benefit from this! So, here's what I do to cope on a bad mental health day.
• Remember that it’s okay to have a bad day & that you’re allowed to have bad days. You don’t have to have it together all the time.
• Remember that you’re human. You don’t have to be perfect. You’re okay exactly the way you are.
• Try and get up out of bed. It’s okay to sleep for a bit, but I find it makes me feel a whole lot better if I’m out of the isolation of my own room.
• Brush your teeth, have a shower (if you’re up to it) and change your clothes (even if it’s into a fresh pair of PJs).
• Practice self care; use a face mask, paint your nails, have a bath, do some colouring, finish the sentence “I love myself because...”, binge watch your favourite tv show/movie.
• If this world is too much to handle, try and escape from it by listening to music, read, have a nap, meditate, watch a TV show or movie or practice mindfulness.
• Talk to a friend. Whether you message them, call them or meet with them in person. It’s not helpful to be by yourself (and alone with your thoughts).
• If you’re struggling a lot/think your safety is at risk, PLEASE contact your psychologist/psychiatrist/counsellor etc. If you’re not currently seeing anyone, there HEAPS of different helplines/online chat groups available, and a lot of them are really helpful.
• Don’t forget to eat every meal, even if your thoughts tell you otherwise, drink plenty of water & don’t forget to take any medications you need.
• Don’t be to hard on yourself & do NOT feel ashamed for having a bad day.
• Remember that you are so so loved. You are an amazing human, that is here on this earth for a reason. You’re needed, cared for, strong, beautiful, smart, kind and courageous. Things won’t be hard forever. You’re going to be okay.
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