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Keep the Change

Posted on October 14, 2015 at 8:10 AM Comments comments (7)

Do you ever feel like something’s coming? And after it happens, your life will never be the same? It’s my last year at Uni, and I’m getting to the point where all the “adult” figures in my life (am I an adult yet?) are asking about my graduation plans, and I’m about ready to give up and do another four years.

 

 

(From Google; https://38.media.tumblr.com/550c13c0708015bcc3acbb2826e31744/tumblr_inline_mj2s2a9lni1qz4rgp.gif" target="_blank">source)

 

Here are some reasons why change is scary, but why it might not be so bad after all.

 

1. Change is new

When we have to deal with new circumstances, we’re often put out of our comfort zones. Humans LOVE comfort zones! It’s where anxiety is lowest, we don’t have to put in much effort, and our brains can coast on autopilot because we know what we’re doing. But once you leave it, you’ll start to grow your skills and take a more active part in shaping your life. By breaking the routines you have in place right now, you’ll have the chance to do all of the exciting things that you never would’ve imagined. By leaving behind familiar people and places, you create space for the better things that are waiting just beyond that comfort zone.

 

2. Change is constant

Let’s face it, change is happening. It’s natural, it’s normal, and it’s a part of life. It takes a lot of energy to resist change, but none to embrace it. By accepting that things are going to change, you’ll free up so much mental energy! You’ll be more relaxed, more flexible, and ready to take on the challenges that life presents.

 

3. Change means loss

Any time we lose something, there’s a grieving process. Grief consists of denial, rage, depression, bargaining, and acceptance (not necessarily in that order). It’s hard to lose something that we’ve become attached to, and part of personal growth is being willing to go through that full process and to let go of the attachment.

 

4. Change is opportunity

So you’ve changed. So what? If you’re not who you used to be, you can literally be anything. Once you let go of the past, the future is open to everything you’ve always wanted to be. If you can dream it, you can do it. While the unknown can be scary, it’s important to keep moving forward to see what the world has in store! Instead of looking at the closed door, turn to the ones that have opened.

 

 

It was really hard to make this list without repeating the same thing over and over! A lot of the resources I found said the same thing a few times, so I tried to make each of these items distinct. Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments, and check out these other resources about changing it up.

 

http://www.allankarl.com/everything-must-change%E2%80%A620-reasons-why-change-is-good/

http://tinybuddha.com/blog/10-powerful-benefits-of-change-why-embrace-it/

http://thoughtcatalog.com/cehudspeth/2013/01/20-ways-to-get-out-of-your-comfort-zone/

 

Keep your heads up, loves! xx

Six Strategies for Self-Care

Posted on September 4, 2015 at 10:55 AM Comments comments (0)

Whether it’s a day that’s been particularly stressful, a series of events that suddenly pile up, or a chronic illness that just seems like too much today, it’s important to have options to make life more manageable. As you might tell from the name, self-care is a method of taking care of yourself! It’s not an elaborate plan, just a list of options that you can do to make yourself feel better. For those days when you’re sore, tired, achey, or just plain feel like you can’t even, here’s some little things that you can do.

 

 

1. Have a hot drink

Tea isn’t everybody’s cup of tea, and the caffeine in coffee can make some people feel even more stressed out, but any kind of hot drink can be soothing. Plus it’s a good way to hydrate! Not enough water can lead to headaches, lack of concentration, and a working memory that isn’t fully functional – which means anything else you’re doing becomes infinitely more difficult. Some of my favourite hot drinks are honey citron drink, hot chocolate, or heated apple cider. Also check out Wikipedia’s  en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_hot_beverages.

 

2. Go for a walk

This is a classic way to get your consciousness thinking about other things. If you’re stuck on a problem, walking forces you to physically distance yourself from it and gives you space to think. If your neighborhood isn’t ideal for walking, you can pace your flat, or go to a park nearby.

 

3. Take a (short) nap

The incubation theory says that sleeping on a problem can help your mind relax its constraints and think about the problem in a new way. Whether you actually dream up a solution or not, a 20-30 minute nap can recharge your brain, clear out toxins, and leave you feeling ready to tackle the problem again from a new angle. A word of warning if you choose this approach, do remember to set an alarm – self-care should be something that prepares you to do other things, and if you sleep away the afternoon you could wake up feeling even more stressed!

 

4. Write it out

Keeping a diary isn’t something that works for everyone, but jotting down your feelings or thoughts on a piece of paper can be a way to clarify what exactly you’re feeling. Free associate with the things that are bothering you – why are they bothering you? What about this situation is overwhelming? Is there something that you do can to solve or manage this with the right steps? If not, what are some things in the present that you can do to make it less harmful to your mental health? Check out our last post on harm reduction for some ideas.

 

5. Get in touch with a friend

I talk to my friends through so many ways that it’s easier to say “communicate” than anything else! Whether it’s a snap on snapchat, a Facebook message, or a good old-fashioned phone call, it can be great to get in touch with someone who knows you really well.

 

6. Take a stretch break

There are so many easy stretches to relieve tension, which also can reduce stress! Because physical symptoms can be misinterpreted by the brain and attributed to the wrong causes, tension in your body can make you feel more stressed than you actually are. Get up! Lean down and reach for the floor, then lean back and reach your arms behind your head. If you can, sit down and stretch out anything that feels tight or sore. Give yourself time! Don’t rush it, take 10-15 minutes to really get into it and feel the results.

 

The most important part of your self-care is that it’s tailored to YOU! I’m more of an introvert, which means that even though I love being around people, I recharge by being alone (meditating, reading a book, going to the park). For extroverts, recharging can come from being around and engaging with others (talking, dancing, cuddling with a trusted person or a pet). It’s all about what’s right for you and your head.

 

Also, try to come up with self-care that you can do the moment you need it. While getting a massage is a great way to relax and de-stress, it’s hard to get yourself out to a massage place when your head is spinning! Try and think of 5 easy things that you can do wherever, whenever.

What do you think of our list? What’s on yours? Let us know in the comments!

 

[Inspired by everydayfeminism.com/2015/02/self-care-101/]

 

Robot Hugs on Harm Reduction

Posted on November 26, 2014 at 10:15 PM Comments comments (0)

This Robot Hugs cartoon does an excellent job of explaining what harm reduction is, and how a person can use harm reduction techniques when they are trying to limit harmful behaviour. Harm reducation emphasises that we don't have to perfect straight away when we are trying to stop or limit harmful behaviours, that these things take time and it's important to put safety procedures in place while we are still learning to reduce the dangerous behaviour.



The comic below is from Robot Hugs at http://www.robot-hugs.com/harm-reduction/




Coming Out Stress

Posted on March 27, 2013 at 4:10 AM Comments comments (0)

Reposting in solidarity this video from Ethan, a trans (Lebanese Muslim) man. Ethan is now 16 weeks on T, and talks about coming out to his family. If you want to post a nice message for him or repost this video in support, check him out on his Youtube Channel

Good luck Ethan :)


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Taking a break

Posted on February 8, 2012 at 11:20 PM Comments comments (0)

Imanadari Mental Health blog is taking a break until after Mardi Gras.

As I am involved in organising a float for the Mardi Gras this year, I am actually practicing what I preach and making sure I don't get too overloaded. I'll still try to update regularly, but I will just be posting any interesting things that I find rather than writing big posts for now.

This week I found an article on procrastination. It's an issue that most people will have to deal wth at some point in their lives. And even if you don't, I bet you know someone in your life that does!

I like this article, and I think it makes some great points about why people might procrastinate. I am also pleased that it acknowledges the fact that it takes a lot of energy to change behaviour - it's unreasonable to expect yourself to change overnight.

Anyway, enjoy reading and happy Mardi Gras for all those who are participating or supporting!