It is estimated that around one in every four people will struggle at some point with their mental health, and yet the stigma surrounding mental illness and the lack of discussion about it still prevails. As such, many people do not feel adequately equipped to deal with their emotions when their mental health starts to go downhill. It’s difficult to know what to do, especially if you’ve never experienced anything like it before. However, if you do struggle with a mental health disorder, here are five tips to help you get back on top when things seem to go wrong.
Reach Out To Friends And Family
The first and most important thing to do when suffering from a mental illness such as living with bipolar is to reach out to those around you, so long as you know they are supportive and trustworthy.
Having a mental illness can feel very isolating or make you want to shrink away from those around you. It’s often very difficult to open up for fear of being shunned or vulnerable, but this shouldn’t stop you. The people who love us are often our most invaluable resource in life and can really make the difference when it comes to mental health. If you don’t feel like you have a supportive network of people in your life, then there are places both online and in real life that can help you to find people who understand what you are going through and give you a place to vent.
Get Help From A Professional
Mental illness is a serious problem and shouldn’t be taken lightly. The people that are most well equipped to help you are professionals such as your doctor or therapist (if you have one). Not only can they offer practical advice on how to sort out your sleep or deal with your emotions, they can also refer you to other resources and prescribe medication if that is something you’re interested in. Doctors in the UK can also help you to get Personal Independence Payments from the government if you feel your mental illness is severely limiting your ability to work and your quality of life.
Don’t Drop Everything
When we feel our mental health start to drop or suffer, it’s often because we are going through a particularly stressful time in our lives. It can be very tempting to drop everything and try to run away or dwell on the problem. This can lead to losing contact with friends, dropping out of school, or quitting your job, which can have a negative impact on your life. While it’s true that sometimes changing your situation can really help to improve your mental health if it is stressing you out, it’s also important to take a step back and evaluate whether this is the right decision. Try to continue pursuing your goals and aspirations to make sure you are still progressing forward in life.
Financially, it’s important that you maintain your finances properly, especially if you are independent of your parents and living on your own. It can be very difficult to maintain a job when you feel like your mental health is taking a turn for the worse, especially if you think your job is contributing to it. However, having a roof over your head and food on the table is very important.
Claiming Welfare Benefits
There are lots of resources out there to help those who are struggling with mental illness maintain good finances, as well as support from the government if you find yourself really struggling. One helpful tool to make use of is Mental Health and Money Advice’s online savings calculator, which you can find at https://www.mentalhealthandmoneyadvice.org/en/tools-calculators/savings-calculator/.
You can also apply for carer’s allowance if you are caring for someone with a mental health condition. You can read more about this option on the Gov.UK website; https://www.gov.uk/carers-allowance/how-to-claim.
Try To Maintain A Routine
Many therapists encourage their clients to develop a routine, for good reason. Having a set routine offers some stability and consistency to your life, which can be incredibly beneficial to your mental health. Having fun activities to do as well as working towards a goal every week at a set time can help you to build a sense of achievement and makes it easier to work towards what you want in life. This will boost self-esteem and confidence.
Identify The Cause
If you can, try to identify what has caused the dip in your mental health. Sometimes, it can be very obvious, such as a breakup or death of a loved one, but often it isn’t so apparent. Taking the time to self-reflect and process what has happened to you can help you to move on and improve your mental health. Talking to a therapist online or in person can really help you to work through any lingering emotions that may be affecting your mental health and preventing you from recovering.
Mental health can be very tricky to deal with, as it can impair your ability to look after yourself and connect with others, but that doesn’t mean that it’s impossible or that you can’t improve at it. Hopefully, these five tips will help you next time you feel like you’re struggling with your mental health.