Cherry blossoms and rainbows, bubbles and googly eyes: Why do some things seem to create such universal joy? In this captivating talk, Ingrid Fetell Lee reveals the surprisingly tangible roots of joy and shows how we all can find — and create — more of it in the world around us.
… who teach 11-year-olds and above.
… are affected by depression worldwide, but less than half of them receive treatment. Let’s destigmatize the conversation
— TicToc by Bloomberg (@tictoc) October 10, 2018
Not many people ask me if I’m OK, but when they do my answer is always the same “I’m fine, just tired” — and people seem to accept that reply.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
For me, “I’m tired” is not a complaint or pessimistic. It’s merely a fact of life.
Allow me to explain why a person who is constantly battling their own brain and societal expectations may feel so drained.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are ppl whose brains are stuck in overdrive and have a great amount of difficulty unwinding to fall asleep at night.
For the “average” person, it takes seven minutes to fall asleep.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
Imagine crawling into bed exhausted and it takes the average of an hour to fall asleep, instead of seven minutes. Every nap and bathroom break and the brain relaxation delay begins again.
These are people whose sleep is frequently disturbed and who spend their nights tossing and turning instead of resting. Sometimes they’re awoken by noises, pain, an inability to keep body parts still, by loud noises inside of their heads, vivid dreams and many other reasons.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are people who wake up feeling, at best, slightly more rested than they were when they crawled into bed in the first place — like a battery that has been damaged that never seems to recharge properly.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are people who for decades don’t feel rested after their slumber.
These are people who put an immense amount of effort into focusing on the task they’re supposed to do or perform, while their minds are trying to carry them down other paths or while they are struggling to remember just what those tasks are.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are are people with working memory issues who — from school age on into adulthood — lack the skill to remember multi-step instructions in a world where they’re just expected to know how to do it.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are ppl who are in a constant war w/their own brain, ppl who are battling their own thoughts & fears; hearing every day from their brains they arent good enough,strong enough,skinny enough,that ppl dont like them or that they should hav done better just to list a few things— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
Who are often asked questions or who hear comments like, “Why are you always tired?” “Just suck it up deal with it,” “It’s just a lack of discipline,” “It’s all in your head,” “Stop being so pessimistic” and “Stop being so lazy.”— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are ppl who experience sensory overload that mentally exhausts them. From the clothing they are expected to wear, the food they are expected to eat, the noise around them, the sights engulfing them & the odors surrounding them, these ppl’s senses are constantly under attack— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
It’s like living on a rope bridge swaying in the wind over a canyon while you’re afraid of heights, and hearing, “I don’t understand what you’re complaining about, the bridge is secure. Suck it up and deal with it. I can do it, so you can too.”— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
It’s like those who don’t have a strong artistic talent being instructed to create a sculpture using the items around you to present how they currently feel within the next five minutes.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are people who expel a large amount of energy trying to understand body language and emotions. It would be like showing you a picture of my cat and expecting you to identify what he’s feeling based on his facial expression and pose within minutes, multiple times a day— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are people who are tired from the side-effects of medication, or self-medicating to cope with the symptoms of their diagnosis and the expectations of society.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are ppl who are struggling w/their brains to differentiate whats real and whats not, bcoz their brains present everything to them as reality.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
These are ppl who hav physical manifestations from their mental struggles bcoz being on high alert takes a physical toll on a person
These are people whose muscles ache constantly or whose muscles are tired from being tense too often, who get frequent headaches or migraines, whose appetite is affected and whose immune system becomes impaired… just to name a few things.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
When someone tells you they’re tired, sometimes you need to look beyond their answer. Are they tired? Are they physically tired and need some sleep? Or do they in fact need you.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
Do they need somebody to look them in the eyes and tell them they’re not fine but that you’re there for them? Do they need someone to realize they’re not OK and to offer them a hug? Because I know when I say I’m tired, that’s what I need.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
Instead, imagine living your life on a rope bridge over a canyon, or imagine how you would feel if someone jabbed you and woke you up several times a night for just one year, and the physical and mental impact it would have on you.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
I beg of you, on behalf of all of us fighting our own silent battles, please be patient and empathetic. Just because you don’t experience it doesn’t mean that it’s not a reality for someone else.— ⓟⓐⓛⓘⓣⓢ™ (@PJ_Palits) January 20, 2018
Quite a ways back, my wife texted me a picture she had taken of a flower. It was beautiful, and it made me smile in a time when smiles were pretty hard to come by.
A few days later, another text. Another flower. And another day and another flower. Each time, it was a little piece of happiness in what had become a very dark world for me.
And it continued. My wife would go out of her way, walking instead of taking the bus, to find different pretty flowers to share with me.
We went together to a local municipal rose garden, and spent a couple of hours taking pictures of roses.
A simple gesture, really. But a daily reminder that there is beauty out there. That someone cares enough to share it with me.
And now – we have a library of flowers to share with the world.
Join here and get a different flower sent to your own inbox every couple of days. And see the beauty. Smile at the thought. Feel a little bit of happiness that we are very pleased to share.
It’s free. It’s happy. It’s here:
A new documentary about anxiety argues that everyone to some extent suffers from stress, nerves and social fear. And, to make their point, the filmmakers have enlisted as Exhibit A the most decorated Olympian in history.
Michael Phelps appears in “Angst” to share his story of being bullied and depressed, leading to severe anxiety. The swimmer, winner of 28 Olympic medals, would look in the mirror and not like what he saw.
“Once I opened up about that and things that I had kept inside of me for so many years, I then found that life was a lot easier. I got to the point where I understood that it’s OK to not be OK,” he says in the film.
“I’m grateful because my mission with this film is to help make the world a better place and I believe he is so additive on that level,” said Scilla Andreen, CEO and co-founder of IndieFlix.
“If we can introduce prevention, self-care and well-being to our children — even in the pre-K and kindergarten years — they can have a completely different life.”
Andreen hopes the film will reach more than 3 million people around the world from 25,000 community and school screenings. “Angst” was filmed in the U.S. and United Kingdom and is appropriate for children starting at age 10.
I’ve read countless articles, many on The Mighty, about the struggle of having an invisible illness and the way other people judge the “validity” of people’s conditions. I’ve also read about people who aren’t taken seriously when they express their most intimate, dark thoughts to family, professionals and friends.
I’m a psychologist. Not too long ago I was reunited with many other mental health workers (psychologists, psychiatrists, researchers and professors were in attendance.) The event was a presentation of a type of therapy and when the speaker began talking, he asked us how mental illness affects a person. Someone answered a person with a mental illness has difficulties and struggles with certain areas of his life. Another person answered that the mentally ill suffer greatly. And then a third person said mentally ill people don’t function in society. I was waiting for someone to refute this, but instead everyone nodded and the speaker actually agreed and said “very good.”
My heart was beating really fast. It was partly because I didn’t know these people very well and I was struggling a bit with social anxiety. I hadn’t contemplated speaking up. But my heart was also beating fast because I was angry. That statement and the fact it wasn’t even questioned is exactly the reason why “high-functioning” people with mental illnesses are sometimes not taken seriously.
I can be dying inside while going through the motions of the day.7 It’s not difficult for me to know how others expect me to act. Acting fine is a cognitive process. You can probably mention right now how an emotionally stable or “mentally sane” person is supposed to act. It really is simple. A generally accepted lifestyle is one where a person wakes up every day, looks presentable, takes care of stuff that needs to be taken care of, eats and goes to sleep. This can sometimes be done regardless of how you feel inside. To say it’s difficult is an understatement, but it’s not impossible.
These “high-functioning” people don’t do it because they want to fool others, they do it because they want to produce and be a part of society. They try so hard to beat their illnesses or disorders. They don’t want to rely on others to take care of them.
My compromise with my career is very clear to me, but I have to admit I have been blessed (and cursed) to see this because I, myself, struggle with my own disorders.
If you struggle with not being taken seriously, my advice to you is to trust you know yourself so much more than anybody else. Nobody has the right to undermine your difficulties.7 If they do, it’s their issue. Keep looking for the person who listens to you and takes your feelings into account. Don’t feel demoralized or flawed. I know it’s a tough pill to swallow when you ask for help from a mental health worker who should be able to understand you but doesn’t. Again, this is a flaw in their own understanding of the human mind.
By the way, yes I did speak up. With a bit of a red face I refuted what they all agreed to and told them it’s a terrible mistake to discard the presence of a mental disorder in relation to the functionality of a person. I added functionality is sometimes a symptom, depending on the illness and the person.
The speaker didn’t know what to answer, so he agreed and moved on.
Handling stress poorly can negatively affect your well-being, but the good news is that you can learn the 10 ways that many people deal with stress and start using these techniques today.
Stress that is unmanaged can lead to physical health problems like high blood pressure, but can chronic stress can also develop into depression, anxiety, and substance abuse. Rather than continue to handle stress poorly, let’s look at the 10 ways that people handle stress effectively.
1. ACCEPT THAT STRESSFUL EVENTS WILL HAPPEN
We all know that things are bound to happen to upset even the most planned out day, but mentally strong people acknowledge this up front. There is going to be something unplanned for that happens to you, but you can begin planning for it now. Tell yourself now that although you know something stressful may happen today, you are prepared to handle it.
2. USE MULTIPLE STRESS MANAGEMENT TOOLS
Researchers in the Journal of Occupational Medicine studied workplace stress management programs and found that one that included goal setting, problem solving, identifying and questioning negative thoughts, relaxation, and time management was helpful for people to handle stress effectively. This strategy of using multiple techniques to handle stress is one that mentally strong people employ all the time.
3. TAKE CONTROL
Many people look at what is causing the stress and look for ways to prevent it from happening again. By making changes in their environment, they can avoid or reduce causes of stress.
Use positive self-talk to remind yourself of just how capable you are when stressful situations come up. For example, say ‘I’ve handled situations like this before and I know I can handle this just fine too.’
5. TIME MANAGEMENT
Much of our perceived stress comes from not having enough time to get done what we want to get done. By planning ahead for lost time, we can make sure that we have enough time in the day for everything, without being stressed when something does inevitably delay us.
Related article: 7 Things You Don’t Need To Stress About, Even If You Think You Do
For example, if you have a full schedule and worry about being late to your next appointment, next time book your day with 20-30 minute gaps of time in between appointments. That way if there is too much traffic, the delay won’t seem as stressful to you due to the extra time that you planned in to your day.
6. SOCIAL SUPPORT
Researchers studying how people handle stress found that a strong social support network was linked to mental well-being. Some people find it challenging to ask for help because they like to be self-reliant. We all need help at some point, so being able to recognize when you have reached a significant stress-level and ask for help to get yourself back to a calm state is an excellent skill that mentally strong people use to handle stress.
7. THEY DO NOT AVOID STRESS
The same study that showed that social support helped mentally strong people to handle stress found that if they used the technique of avoiding things that they thought of as stressful, their mental well-being decreased significantly.
Avoiding is just a way of delaying handling stress. Running away from a problem never solved anything so choosing to face your worries and acknowledge the uncomfortable feelings while using another coping strategy is better for your mental strength.
8. SEE THOUGHTS ABOUT STRESS AS TEMPORARY
Thoughts come and go and some are terribly negative. Our awareness of our negative thoughts about stress is an excellent skill to have. This mindfulness can then be taken to the next level. Rather than avoid or repress negative thoughts about stress, see them as temporary mental events that will be gone fairly soon.
This is a strategy called ‘decentering’ by psychologists, where we challenge negative thoughts. We can choose to accept our negative thoughts as fact, or we can acknowledge that we were making a bigger deal than we needed to about the stressful event, and allow that thought to pass away from our minds like a cloud.
9. LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE
This one stressful event is not going to change the course of your life all by itself.You are still a fantastically talented, creative and intelligent person who just had a negative experience. Mentally strong people know that although the surface of the ocean is turbulent, deep down it is calm.
10. FIND WAYS TO ADD JOY
Adding a few moments of laughter to a stressful day can be all it takes to handles stress well. Even in the midst of a crisis, being able to laugh at yourself for how you overreact or misjudge something is a way to shift from a negative mindset to a positive one. For example you might say, ‘Well that was silly of me to forget my wallet, but hey, at least I noticed it before I was at the cash register with a full shopping cart.’