Swaziland
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BATTLING THROUGH MENTAL HEALTH COSTS

It probably would not be too much of an overstatement to suggest that the vigour, speed and atrocious nature of modern day life have gone up a notch, particularly in recent times

Economically, the mere cost of trying to live heavily outweighs that of actually living. Socially we have let the standards of our moral and values system drop a few degrees, which has left our socio-emotional landscape ‘hanging by a thread’.

Strain

The psychological dimension of the human being has not been spared either as now (probably more than ever), the individual’s mental health is under various sources of strain and stress. With everything going on in and around them, the basic assumption is that every individual is well-equipped mentally to be able to oversee, make decisions, process and fittingly cope with whatever their life experiences throw at them – an assumption which tends to be aggressively way off the mark, most times. For others, it is a genuine struggle to cope with every day life disappointments or failures, for instance or getting over past mental traumas and because of that, every day they put up with the challenge of building their resolve, mental resilience and consolidating their psycho-emotional fortitude just to get by.

Lies

There are no lies in the fact that we are under consistent pressures to be at our best at all times to keep up with the ‘hustle and bustle’ of the world today and to create the best versions of ourselves as possible. However, it is alternatively true that this is far from possible or logical in real life. We are constantly under the influence of things (like our families, school, our careers, our businesses and our relationships) that are always scrambling for our attention; something I consider a ‘poisoned chalice’ considering that those are exactly the things that end up dragging us into psycho-emotional turmoil. It is ‘a part of life’, of course, and we are obliged to partake in the social systems that we are a part of, but as a doctor would probably say, ‘everything is right in healthy doses’.

Most times we become so consumed with our lives, our ambitions and careers, so much so we almost become obsessed with the idea of having no time to spend on ourselves or even those close to us. At that point, the individual has become almost fully immersed in life’s activities they begin to abandon their own mental health in exchange for endless stressing, overthinking and mental over-engagement. These constant states of worry and anxiety leave very little psycho-emotional strength for entities that matter more and have a significantly higher emotional value like your children, for instance. This sort of thing breeds nothing but disconnection and conflict in families where children (and sometimes a spouse) feel psycho-emotionally detached from their ‘breadwinner’, who spends very little time with them.

The need to survive and thrive is far greater now more than it has ever been and it is fairly understandable why so many people are engulfed by the urge to provide, achieve and succeed. This should not, however, take away the fact that your mental health remains the ‘hub’ of all your functioning and in the event that this hub processes way more than it should, things could easily go downhill. My advice is, take a break sometimes. Read new books, play video games or watch new documentaries, spend time with people whose presence is emotionally rewarding to you mentally. These are some of the ways (among others) to broaden your thinking capabilities, flush out negative or pressing thoughts to make way for fresh new ideas.
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