Embracing Mental Health: DC Speaks

1) How do you view your Mental Health?

Honestly my mental health right now is as close to perfect as possible. For me though it hasn’t always been like this I used to be in a place where I had no sense of self-worth or hope for myself but for the last 2 and half years, I have been in a great place mentally.

2) What serves as your therapy?

When I need to clear my head or I’m not in this best situation mentally my main therapy is taking my mind away from the situation and putting it on things that I enjoy like watching my favourite shows or listening to my favourite songs. In addition, I like to get outdoors and go on a walk or a bike ride to open my mind up.

3) How do you balance your emotions, behaviour, attitudes?

For me it’s all about the opportunity cost and if certain things are worth it and appropriate. What I mean is I’ve grown as a person and I don't react in a harmful way to things I try to put myself in the best places possible. I try to think about my past and how I would deal with things and try to do the opposite in order to stay positive and happy.

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4) Are there any mental health stigmas you’ve supported and stood by?

I wouldn’t say supported because I know it’s bad but when I’ve had my various problems, I’ve allowed myself to believe it wasn't that serious and that I was overreacting. When in reality I should have recognised that mental health was a serious thing. In addition, the stigma that men have to be continuously strong is one that I have followed for a while unfortunately. 

5) What have you learned about mental health that you did not know?

Over the years I have really learned that the outside doesn’t dictate the outside. Someone can be smiling, partying and having fun in public but that doesn’t mean that they aren’t experiencing mental health battles, it's important not to judge a book by itscover.

6) Do you believe that mental health issues are throughout your family? Perhaps overlooked?

If I’m being honest, I don’t have a big family but with the little I have to go by I don’t think there are any mental health issues within my family or any issues that are overlooked.

7) On days that can be challenging, how do you nurture yourself?

I really try to use positive affirmations and tell myself that I am great and that I will be successful in the future. I also try my hardest to not dwell on things too much and realise that this negative feeling won’t last forever so why should I let it command a hold over me.

8) How are you helping spread the word on mental health awareness?

I find it hard to discuss mental health with others because it’s very easy to say the wrong things and appear insensitive, so the most I do is really make myself available to friends so that they can confide in me or ask for advice. I could definitely do more and really be an advocate for it because it is a very serious thing and men are made to feel that they have to deal with it and this perception needs to change.