Mental Health 101
Do you ever get that sudden feeling of anger out of nowhere?? Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with random unwanted emotions, I find myself starring to the point my vision becomes blurred. I’m not looking at anything, in particular, I’m just looking. Does that make sense?? Time can pass before me without me realizing it, it’s like I’m in some sort of trance or under a spell. My breaths become long and deep, a heaviness to my chest. I can become dizzy and numb to the spot.
This morning I woke up positive and, apart from some fatigue, I felt great!! But not long later, as I was sorting the washing out, I became enraged out of nowhere!! This anger kept building up to the point I was in tears and I didn’t know why. I couldn’t even focus on finishing the task I’d started. Stupid right??
These for me, are all signs that my mental health has become unstable again.
The most important thing for me to do at this point is to figure out WHY.
I’m getting better at noticing symptoms of my mental health suffering. It’s taken a long time and a lot of therapy but, I’m happy with the progress I’ve made to be able to catch things in time rather than let them spiral out of control.
How I Figure Out Why My Mental Health Is Hitting A Low
The first thing I do is think about what I’ve been doing in the days/time leading up to this moment. Has anything happened that could trigger me?? It doesn’t matter how big or small, a trigger is a trigger and once it’s pulled there’s no turning back. But how do we dodge the bullet from doing damage?? That’s the hardest part to conquer.
Once I figure out what my trigger is, I find it easier to calm myself.
So what exactly is a mental health trigger??
For example – This morning when I had a meltdown doing the washing, at first I didn’t know why I was getting so worked up. It’s taken me all day (even until I started writing this post) to figure out what had triggered me. Yesterday I had my last therapy session. It has been a tough few months going over my trauma and learning to control PTSD – You can read my story here – and I felt positive that I had finally completed something and I now had the skills to help me live a more normal life. Now that all sounds great yes?? What I didn’t realize, is how I would feel the following day when my subconscious realized I was now alone doing this. Nobody there for that weekly check-in to reassure me that I’m not going insane and what I was feeling was valid. Nobody to turn to without any form of judgment. Turns out, even though I felt positive about completing my course, I was now feeling very vulnerable about my future.
So there we have the trigger, finishing therapy and doing things alone. Now I know what was bothering me, it’s time to put my skills to work and, reassure myself that I could do it. So let’s gets get my mind back to reality!!
Mindful thinking is when we take our time to think about our thoughts and work out if they are in fact true or if our mental health state is making something un-realistic seem true. Paranoia at it’s best folks!!
Am I alone going through this – No I have my husband and my dad (my chosen safety nets) to talk to any time I need to vent or panic.
Do I have the skills to calm myself when I get triggered – YES!!
If I need more therapy or help, will it still be available to me – YES!!
These are things I had put in place with my therapist before finishing therapy for PTSD so I would have reassurence that if I did have a slip up, I had a backup plan. This is called a therapy blueprint. If you want a post on what my blueprint looks like and how to you can create your own one then let me know in the comments.
Just answering those questions to myself has already taken the edge off. I just need to keep reminding myself of them!!
I’m still learning my triggers and fighting my inner demons and I’m sure there will be plenty more times that I’ll feel like the world is crashing down on me. But this girl isn’t going down without a fight!!
So if you’re like me, and you struggle with your emotions, stop and think about what could actually be the source. No matter how silly it may seem, if something has triggered you and you haven’t realized it, it can bubble away until it boils over. It’s taken me such a long time to get to this point and, let’s face it, Rome wasn’t built in a day!! I may have had therapy and done great figuring out my story, but it doesn’t fix the problem. You can’t change the past but, you can change how you look at it.
The past is there to guide us on our next journey.
You can always reach out to me via my contact page or leave me a messege in the comments. This is a safe place for everyone.
Much Love – Rhiannon, Mrs Slee-Jones xx
You may also be interested in –
What is Chronic Fatigue??
Managing Pain Without Perscription Drugs
How to help children with anxiety/depression
22 thoughts on “Understanding Your Mental Health 101”
I remember when I was recovering I used to find so many things that would send me on a spiral for appearingly no reason. And even now, even though I’ve been ‘in the clear’ or ‘healthy’ for over 4 years, there are still some of those triggers that set me off. I find taking a few moments to myself and going for a walk, or focusing on my breathing or having a cuppa (decaf) really help me! Best of luck on your recovery xxx
Katie | katieemmabeauty.com
I’m so glad you’re at a ‘healthier’ stage of your mental health journey!! Do you find decaf makes a difference with your mental health?? xxx
This is a very powerful post. I have been “cleared” for 8 years now. I have learnt many of triggers that can set off my mental health issues. However, over time I have learnt how to deal with it. Normally, running, breathing and eating a well balance diet have helped me. Good luck with your recovery.
Great that you’re on the right track!! I find eating good meals helps also, if I eat something that isn’t so healthy it really affects me mentally but, I think that is down to having body dysmorphia!! Thanks for taking the time to read and comment xx
That’s great that you were able to work out some of your triggers, I can rarely tell if a burnout is coming my way as in persistently depressed and alway have been since primary school, which often masks the symptoms of an impending burnout for me
I’m sorry you’re always depressed, it must be a very hard feeling to constantly have.
Congratulations on all the progress you’ve made!! It’s great that you’re aware of what your triggers are and have back-up plans in place if needed. It is also really helpful to have a reliable safety net, so I’m very glad you have your husband and dad to lean on! And you’re absolutely right, Rome wasn’t built in a day. But, you’re doing great with the progress you’re making and the steps you’re taking! Thanks for sharing this, and best wishes!! ?
Thanks so much!! Every bit of support means the world to me xx
This post is so relatable. When I go into a slump it takes me so long to get out. Prevention and recognizing my triggers is helpful. Love this article. Thank you for sharing your experiences and what helps you.
I’m so glad you found this helpful!! Recognizing triggers is such a hard thing to master isn’t it!!
Congrats on your progress. I feel like I am still learning about my mental health. I get anxiety a lot and I am trying to lessen coffee and certain foods. This is a great post.
Thanks!! I’m seeing a lot lately about people lessening the amount of coffee they’re having. I wonder what the connection with caffeine is.
the beginning paragraph is so relatable to me. i tend to get so frustrated sometimes – running errands etc…if something isn’t going right or a stranger is being irritating. i’m def working on it and i think the pandemic made it worse because people were in a frenzy buying up the stores and stuff. you mentioned some great tactics to keep an even keel with mental health. i especially use mindful thinking as often as i can.
I haven’t mastered not being irritated by strangers yet haha!! I think a lot of us are struggling more so now due to others’ actions. I hope your journey progresses!!
This is a really great post! When it comes to mental health, it’s so important to be self-aware and understand your triggers x
Thanks for this post! We all need the reminder that understanding ourselves and what’s going inside is super important.
Love this!! It can be hard, but it is so important to identify our triggers. If we don’t know what’s bothering us, how can we work to make it better?? It has been really helpful for me to have my husband sit with me and let me think about what might be making me upset.
I’m so glad you have your husband for the support!! I find having someone to sit and work through things with me so helpful!!
Such a very open and powerful post. We’re never alone in this struggle and I’m happy you have a wonderful support system plus coping mechanisms to help you when needed!
Awah thankyou so much for that comment!!
Good post. It’s so important to recognize your triggers and stop the downward spiral whenever possible.
Thankyou for taking the time to read!!