In all that I am - I seek only to love, no lofty ideals of what love might mean for you
We are all on our journey, finding our path - stumbling over the rocks and the blocks of our own personal demons.
When we start a journey of transformation, it is not an easy street. All our safety and security in the truth that we hold, our beliefs, our understanding and our direction are challenged and the earth beneath us feels unstable. I know…..I have spent more time in the eye of the storm than I care to remember - the dark nights of the soul when life feels impossible and no light shines at the end of the tunnel.
When you work with people whose lives have been upskittled by their past, their now and the fears of their future, it causes a deeper exploration of your own psyche and one often asks - what separates us? We all have our own madness - those debilitating ruminations and terrifying dreams creating untold fear, anxiety and depression. And this is where I have spent my life - working with people afraid of themselves or others and for some completely lost in their own reality and for most lost in the story they were told.
Each of these wonderful people - my greatest teachers, were labelled, marked like a box ‘this way up’ and packaged accordingly - humanity lost, relationships ruined and hopes and dreams of a ‘normal life’ shattered. The rabbit hole is deep - this drug fits this label, this new treatment - the answer. One does not need to delve too deeply into the history of mental health treatments to know that they were NOT the answer.
You might ask where are you going with this?
I am not anti-psychiatry - I am pro humanity, pro love, pro acceptance of all of our odd peculiarities. And yes in a deep crisis: support and treatment is absolutely necessary, talking treatments, medication and therapy are a vital life line…….
I am anti-labeling and the impact that label can have throughout our lives, once in Mental Health Services... always labelled the record never wiped.
If I could say something quite radical - don’t define yourself by the label you were given - clumsy, stupid, simple, useless, idiot, mad. You are so much more than that and those words belong to the person who spoke them and their demons - not YOU.
If you were given a Mental Illness Label - again don’t define yourself by the label, accept that the diagnosis was given at a time when you were unwell and this informed the treatment you were given to help you recover.
YOU are so much more than any label: Spend time today thinking about the labels that empower you, bring you a smile, a label that feels happy to you and watch how the earth beneath you starts to feel more stable.
May 18 - 24th is Mental Health Awareness Week in the UK, the theme is Kindness. Want to get involved with promoting Mental Health and Wellness? Get in touch now - firstname.lastname@example.org