Embracing My Mental Health : Melanin_ontheglow

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1. How do you view your Mental Health?

I view my personal mental health as a work in progress, with genuine progress from where I was mentally a few years ago, a few months ago. I find myself having less and less negative thoughts, however since I am human, a negative thought will enter my mind here and there. But, it’s ultimately how I decide to get through that. 

2. What serves as your therapy?

My therapy consists of:

• Music (man, music is definitely food for the soul)

• Writing (all of my thoughts, venting, self-reflection, self- inventory, ideas, etc)

• Being around loves ones-family, my circle, boyfriend(communication-talking or texting, laughing, cuddles w/my child, quality time, good energy etc)

• Cooking/eating

• Prayer/Church

• Travelling/trips

• Wine (1-2 glasses will do)

• Thrifting

• A good self-care book

• Positive affirmations/quotes, sticky notes, etc

• Podcasts (steering away from the gossipy podcasts)

• Binging shows on Netflix 

• Good weather 

• Aromas (candles, burning oils)

• Saging my home, myself and my child

3. How do you balance your emotions, behavior, attitudes?

I try to be consistent with remembering what I have learned over the years. Putting all of that into action and not just taking notes when I hear/see something that might work. Actually putting those things into my routine. Stopping to think most importantly “why did that make you upset/ why is this really bothering you?” I stop to sit in my thoughts for a second to reflect if what is bothering me is really worth that energy and wasted brain cells. I try hard to feel what I feel and if it’s negative, let it run its course and move on. Harboring in self-doubt, making things up in my head before it even happens, overthinking and negativity in general is one of my biggest steps I am overcoming in my life’s journey. 

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

I try my best to start my own traditions in my household so no, I don’t support any stigmas that I may have heard from childhood. I can’t honestly recall hearing my mother speak negatively about therapy because she actually studied psychology and was also a teacher as well. In my father’s home, therapy wasn’t brought up in a bad way. However, if something was wrong within the family, we had family meetings and we discussed our issues.

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

I have learned and still learning that it is okay to ask for help if you need it. It’s okay to seek professional help as well if that is something you think you may need. Mental health is important for everyone to focus on and no one exempt, no one!

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

In my family, no one has really spoken about mental health prior to the last few years. I think everyone just tries to get through things on their own and wants everyone to think things are always okay. Recently, I have brought of the topic of therapy to my mother and my baby sister has actually began therapy as well for her own personal needs. I don’t believe there is necessarily a history of mental health illness within either side of my family, that I am aware of. However we all have dealt with feelings of depression, anxiety, etc. 

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

I encourage myself to incorporate at least 2 or more of the activities listed in question number 2 in my routine at all times, especially on the challenging days. Once I get my equilibrium back in order and I feel like my energy is back to positivity, I soon realize that those activities actually have helped me get through things. 

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

A few years ago I created a FB group called BeYOUtifulEmbrace, in which encourages women to be themselves. It encourages them to be their very best and to not allow others to interfere. Being YOU, doing what YOU love, Loving YOUrself, Self-care, recognizing YOUr worth, asking for/accepting help, women empowerment, stepping out of comfort zones, manifesting, living for YOU and no one else, support and the list continues! I believe that all of these things and more will and can lead to a health mind, body & soul.

 

Ayesha Baiyina 

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