Cognitive behavioral therapy
These three techniques can help people combat feelings of loneliness, a new report says. Have you tried them?
Stress, diet and sleep could all be exacerbating your symptoms.
Much like a physical illness, there are symptoms of mental health issues that we can recognise once we know what to look for.
We've never been taught to put our mental health first in the same way we've been taught to look after and listen to our bodies. This is simply ludicrous and irresponsible. As you're growing up, you're taught to try and reduce the risk of getting sick.
We all have a blood pressure but when does it become too high? We all have a weight, but when does it become obese? Sure, there are designated medical cut-offs for these values (usually 140/90 and 30 for blood pressure and BMI for weight, if you were asking...), but the point is that they are on a scale. And perhaps it's time mental health was spoken about in this way too.
It can be felt by the rich and poor, the powerful and weak, the young and old. Anyone can dish it out. Anyone can be a victim. Take my five-year-old daughter for example. She wrote me a letter today. It said, "Dear daddy, I am stupid gerl ever".
Imagine waking up in the morning and being unable to take a step outside, imagine not being able to pop down to your local store or leave the house to visit family and friends. This is reality for those experiencing agoraphobia. The mere thought of leaving an individual's 'safe space' can result in a full blown panic attack.
Since receiving the help I desperately needed, I am happy and in control. My anxiety will never truly go away. I still have my bad days. People sometimes don't understand why I spend all day sulking in the corner. It's OK if you don't understand. We're all a bit different. What if you need a little mental health care? What if you know someone who needs it? What will you do?
From experience, I find that for this well proven technique to work best certain other boxes need to be ticked first. We need to be emotionally and mentally ready for CBT. Confused? Let me explain.
I'm not saying everyone who suffers from Generalised Anxiety Disorder thinks like this, I'm sure there are many GAD folk who would love a luxury cruise. This is just the way my irrepressible, inscrutable, outrageous head operates.