These are rather unprecedented times and nothing in 2020 has necessarily gone the way we wished it would have. However, if there’s something good that has come out of it, it’s that if not the entire population, a larger population as compared to the previous years has started to care about mental health. Since the past so many years, the common response to any mental health problem has been- it’s all in your head, you’re not privileged enough to be feeling this way, sleeping will cure you, and you’re too dramatic. The sad part is, for a long time, people with a mental illness actually believed these rather problematic statements and blamed themselves for their condition.
It’s taken so long people to start understanding that mental health is as important as physical health, if not more important, and despite all the efforts, we still do have a long way to go. While physical health only takes into consideration the bodily factors, mental health is linked with hormonal, nutritional, cognitive, social and spiritual health. All of these together influence a person’s mood and behaviour. It is more dynamic than we tend to assume. When we are physically unwell, we visit a doctor, we rest, and we take it easy on ourselves. Why is it not normal to do the same for when we feel mentally unwell?
However, since every step counts, let’s see how has the new generation started to spread the awareness about mental health through the resources provided to them (primarily social media).
Students and young adults through the help of colleges, firms or each other, have started to carry out webinars and sessions on the relevance of mental health at status quo. The fact that they’ve actually started considering talking to their parents about it and making them understand the difference between myths and realities of mental illnesses is rather noteworthy. Therapy is being normalised.
Given the unfortunate series of events that has taken place this year, people are now understanding what anxiety is, what perpetually living in fear is, what not being able to get out of your bed and the inability to gather the will to do anything on a particular day is. What started of as a productivity contest, has now turned into a happening that has made people realise the value of living in the moment, doing what they love, and exploring while they still can. As stressful as colleges and workspaces can be, people have started to make time for their hobbies and doing something which helps them turn their passion into a livelihood, or an everyday task to say the very least.
In times where the news somehow manages to get sadder or gloomy with every passing day, it’s inevitable for the optimism levels to fall. We won’t deny that it’s necessary to take this serious for it has drastic long- term changes and is crippling the world economies. Nonetheless, it’s important that we stay hopeful, it’s important that we give ourselves time, it’s important that we let loose and not think about everything that’s wrong in the world. We remember reading John Green’s Paper Towns as a bunch of primary schoolers and being really fascinated by a line that read ‘If I had a nervous breakdown every time something awful happened in the world, I’d be crazier than a shithouse rat.’ It’s one of our favourites. Not expressing your opinion because you’re not in the mental capacity to have people retaliate, is okay.
Not working when all your friends are working, is okay. Not being able to give back to the society due to your lack of resources, is okay. What’s important is for you to work on all aspects of your personality, one at a time. It’s okay if it’s taking long for you to get back to work, and it’s okay if you do not necessarily want to talk to anyone. It’s only viable that you take your time. We know for a fact that for a person who is a workaholic and believes that their happiness will come from working 20 hours a day, it can not be easy to tell themselves that it’s okay if they can’t be productive for sometime and that they’ll eventually get better, but we hope if you’re the same kind, you’re able to relax without any guilt.
More power to you, reader!