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  • Writer's pictureHouse of Qi

It’s Okay Not To Be Okay

Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.

— Albus Dumbledore

I’ve been thinking a lot about mental health recently. Stress, anxiety and fear are all on the rise. I see it in the news, in my family and in the faces of strangers. I feel it every day in different ways. It’s no good pretending it doesn’t exist or hoping it will just go away. So…what can we do to help ourselves and others? Unfortunately, there is no “one size fits all” cure. We are all individuals and therefore we will all deal with anxiety in our own way. The solution for you may be very different to my solution. However, there are some universal truths when it comes to dealing with mental health issues.

First, it is okay not to be okay. That is the most important lesson to learn. We aren’t perfect. We make mistakes. We need help. Don’t be afraid to ask for it. Most people have experienced some form of depression or anxiety and they will empathise and reach out to you. Always seek help. You are never alone.

Secondly, seek treatment if necessary. There is no shame in needing counseling or medication. Sometimes, life is overwhelming. There is no shame in that.

Third, alternative treatments can help. Acupuncture may help reduce and relieve the effects of anxiety and stress. Think about your last acupuncture session and how relaxed you felt afterwards. I’ll bet you slept better as well. Massage therapy is another great way to relieve stress. As are other holistic therapies. Don’t be afraid of alternative solutions…embrace them.

Last, but not least, follow some simple guidelines to help you help yourself. Eat a healthy, balanced diet. Meditate – try Tai Chi. This is a moving meditation form and helps balance your Qi. Exercise more. You’ll feel better, look better and help relieve stress all at the same time. Try a sleep routine to help ensure better slumber. Put the electronic devices away an hour before bed and listen to soothing music or meditate quietly. Try learning a new skill – like learning a new language or painting or playing piano. This will help focus your mind and reduce stress at the same time. And finally, structure your time. By having a schedule and keeping to it, you are helping to reduce the unexpected pitfalls that add stress to every day. But remember, life is fluid and we have to be flexible sometimes.

Take care of yourself. Love yourself. You’ll be surprised how quickly that love grows and spreads outwards to others.

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