The new “selfie”

In the UK, it is Mental Health Awareness week.  This falls in October for Australia.  Not that it matters when and where given that the internet helps us be aware whichever country we reside.

It’s all good though.  A lot of celebrities and Royals are talking about it and allowing “average” Jo or Joe to feel normal and comforted that life can be a struggle sometimes and that it’s OK.  In recent years, we have certainly moved on in terms of talking about mental illness and mental health support, yet suicide is on the up.  It seems we are missing a trick, maybe.

Also on the up is the need to be just perfect, whatever perfect is.  We have become a wonderland of beauty and selfies.  We do all sorts of things to be beautiful and then we put pictures up on social media.  Of ourselves.  And usually on our own.  Imagine Mona Lisa doing that?

According to Ann Steele’s article (see link) there are some great reasons behind the selfie.  They define you.  They provide a space to be part of the selfie tribe.  They allow you to say whatever you want the viewer to see and understand.  A good selfie, with the right angle (there’s a technique to this I understand) and good lighting, chin up, etc., we look fantastic.   And whilst this is all good, it’s a bit short lived.  Until the next selfie, that is.  Click here for more info…

For me, I’d like to link mental health to mental wealth and call that the new selfie!  If you made a small investment in yourself, you can gain rich rewards.  Shoving the niggles and the struggles and the “I’M FINE” statements to one side do not often melt away.  They need to be talked about, managed, dealt with.  And when you’ve dealt with those, look for other selfie tasks you would like to tackle.  And grow.  And feel better about yourself.

So.  As this is seemingly timely and we are in mental health awareness mode after all, have a quick check on yourself and decide if your inner selfie is happy.  If not, talk to someone, no matter how trivial you think it is. 

Let’s not be “average” or “I’m fine” anymore.  Let’s be Mona and find inner peace.  She has always held a healthy debate…. personally, I reckon she’s smiling.

Mona Lisa Selfie

The stigma of “counselling”

For some, it takes a lot of courage to seek a counsellor.  Often thoughts of weakness arise, that they can’t cope.  Which can be known as shameful.  And often it’s the beginning of something they have hidden or shunned before.  Which can be painful.  The journey into the unknown is scary.  But once the journey begins, it gets easier.  

The relationship between client and counsellor is the key ingredient here.  Is it easy? Sometimes yes, often, no.  Is it worth it?  Possibly.  I say possibly as it depends on so many variables but in most cases, it’s a YES.

Look at stigma and the negatives which come with it – as others’ perceptions, not yours.  

Embrace, release and be vulnerable.  There’s the strength right there.

Will it be easy- Nope...Worth it-Possibly...