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One weight at a time…

If you wanna be somebody, if you wanna go somewhere, you better wake up and pay attention.

I am genuinely tired, like all of the fucking time. My body, mind and spirit are exhausted, and if you are dealing with mental health issues you are very much like me, and it can be incredibly frustrating to live with.

Part of the healing is letting yourself rest until you feel better, but if you wait too long you end up being stuck in a place that is so dark you start to really believe you are never ever going to get out of it.

This time last year I was painting, drawing and dancing every single day, I spent every day of last year completely stoned out of my tree, and the only thing that has really changed is that I stopped smoking weed.

As soon as I slowed down on my weed intake, I started realizing that I didn’t feel like dancing any more. A part of me felt my heart genuinely break when I realized how much I had been forced to survive, and a sense of “it’s just not fair” came over me so deep I honestly thought I’d never get out of it.

I’m still there, don’t get me wrong, it’s still not fair that I was forced to suffer at the hands of pedophiles and rapists for twenty plus years of my life, but the interesting thing is I am not looking for sympathy because there are plenty of others who are still suffering. I’d rather you point your sympathy towards them.

What I am looking for is the motivation to keep going, not to give up, and right now I don’t really have any more reasons to keep going other than the fact that I don’t want to be stuck in the darkness.

When we’re fighting against mental health issues, the fight looks very different than say that of a Soldier who is in an active war zone. Our fight looks like taking out the garbage and doing the cat litter or cleaning our bedrooms.

It looks like eating healthy food and making sure that we don’t drink too much coffee, but we don’t look at these things as tools that are a part of our war chest, we look at them like chores and then we get exhausted at the thought of having to do one more thing.

When I was having body issues a few years ago I taught myself to get over them by focusing on one single thing I liked about my body. I picked my eyes because I think they are rather beautiful. Dark brown with a navy blue ring around them, which is something I don’t see on many people. Or at least that’s what I’ve taught myself.

Focusing on mental health issues is the same thing, you pick one thing a day and you do it, no matter what it is. You take yourself out on a date night, which is something my friends online do quite a bit. You go out and spend time with yourself, learn to enjoy your own company outside the house and trust me when I tell you it can be completely nerve wracking.

The thing is going out alone as an adult isn’t the same as it was when we were kids, I find most adults to be exhausting but when I am alone I can plug in my headphones and have full blown conversations with myself in my own head or sometimes out loud because it helps me vocalize what I am feeling inside.

During abuse chat someone suggested naming your feelings, which is something I used to do all the time to help you really get to know what you are thinking and how you are feeling.

There are all these tiny minuscule little things we don’t think about that we do to help us cope and we never share them because we feel silly, but they really do help. Whether it’s going for a run or talking to yourself in your own headphones, if it helps you then it cannot be that bad.

So focus on these things that make you smile, that give you hope and keep doing them and when you get the chance take it up a notch. Like working out, once your body gets used to the weights or the stress of walking on a treadmill you have to actually push yourself a little bit each day to get a little stronger. Mental health is the exact same thing, if you refuse to get up, to make the changes then you will never heal and sadly no one can do it for you.

Mental health requires help from outside sources, don’t get me wrong, we need to reach out to others for advice and support, but we also have to be willing to do the work. I am feeling a little better each day, getting a little bit stronger, feeling less ties to the people who tried to drag me down and even less guilt for letting them go, but I am not “there” yet.

I don’t ever think I am going to finish my book, I honestly don’t see a future where I am a famous novelist any more, but I’ve accepted that and decided to change my reality in the moment instead of focusing on the future.

So what’s one thing you can do today or tomorrow that will get you moving towards your mental health goal? share it below so that others can learn from your experience.

Sending all my love,

Devon J Hall

 

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