Without mental health, everything is flawed.
What then are necessary for your mental health?
I got a comment by "temperament" on my last post.
I think it's a worthy question which deserves a post on it's own.
Cos I have a number of friends who are struggling with mental issues, or have overcome it.
I've never really had much mental issues. I think also due to my attitude in life.
For me, I feel the problem and answer is very simple.
Many people have desires, wants, aspirations, feelings, loneliness, security, recognition, etc etc.
It's part of life.
People strive hard to attain these, but when they go unfulfilled, people get stressed and it builds up into mental issues.
A lot of times, people look outward to settle these issues. But many times, the answer is inward.
It's easy for me to say, cos... mentally I'm programmed in a certain way.
But I really feel that the answer to these issues lie within ourselves. The problem is understanding it and recognizing it and managing it.
Let's take financial security for example.
The easy way to look for an answer is outward. Money. I must earn more money to be financially secure.
But I also know that people who have $1 million might not feel financially secure.
A sense of security is found on the inside. Not in a bank account. Sure, there is some need of money, but it's not as much as what people believe it to be.
So let's deconstruct the problem... This is one way to look at things, maybe there are others...
When people talk about financial security, they usually mean lifestyle security. They want to maintain some form of lifestyle. So... typically, it's not really ALL about the money. IF you can maintain the same lifestyle WITHOUT money, that's also ok right?
BUT we lived in a world where the Government says, "Ok, we'll take care of your food, lodging, medical expenses, if you earn more that's your bonus."
There will still be people who feel insecure, although, by right, that shouldn't make sense.
And the thing is... financial security, is pretty much a state of mind.
A point where you go... OK I have enough.
It's the same idea as children will always be children in their parent's eyes.
Even at 40 years old, some adults are still being treated like kids by their parents.
Simply put, the parents haven't "let go yet".
And financial security is similar.
It doesn't matter how much you have. If you don't let go, you will still feel financially insecure.
That's why I say the answer lies inside.
This mentality issue manifests in many places.
Some people NEED a sense of recognition from others. So they strive to study hard, work hard, keep getting better, show off, buy stuff, etc... To show to others that they have succeeded.
And whenever they hit one benchmark, they will look at the next benchmark, cos there's always someone else who needs to be impressed. There's always someone else to show off to.
And once again, I know people like this.
They strive to be the perfect son/daughter to their parents, the perfect father/mother to their children, the perfect staff to their bosses, the perfect friend to their friend, etc...
And by doing that, they lose themselves. Cos they are always trying to do things which pleases others. And they may beat themselves up for not fulfilling other people's expectations.
And it's sad when I see them like that. And I just want to tell them "Let it go..."
Cos... it's not possible to be the perfect whatever in other people's eyes.
You can only be the perfect you. And they need to accept that. It's not the other way around.
So it's important to set the expectation right. I love my parents, I give them enough respect, I help them when they need help, etc... But I will not live the life they want me to live. Cos I want to live the life I want to live.
Same for how parents and kids. Parent's lives don't revolve around the kids. I don't know how it became that way, but that's not right. Cos it teaches the kids the wrong thing. That they are the center of everything. Which also isn't right.
Anyway, the idea here is also... the answer lies inside.
I believe we are bombarded by society and the need to fulfill expectations. But the answer is found inside. We have to live our lives, with due respect to the people around us, but I'm not here to make my parents happy/proud by working in a job that they expect me to work in. I'll make them happy/proud by being a good son, living a good life, so that they don't need to worry about me. Parents bring up children so that the children can do well and survive and flourish in life so that they can in-turn teach their own children and so on so forth. The actual job/career that the child does... isn't really part of the package, and kids shouldn't be trying to live out parents expectations or fulfill their parents' unfulfilled dreams.
This is similar with friends. If you don't feel like going out at night to bars, but your friends ONLY hang out in bars and they don't want to hang out with you anywhere else, then most likely... they aren't your friends.
Of course I wasn't always like this... I used to be pretty normal... thinking about stuff, stressing about stuff, etc... then as life went on, I watched and I learnt.
Instead of changing myself to different people and trying to make people happy, but I myself wasn't really happy, I decided to walk my own road, do things my way, accept myself for who I am...
At first, it's a lonely road, cos people weren't happy with my changes, the not so close people left, the close people stayed behind, and new people came along and I got new friends. And I fill my life with the people who are willing to accept me the way I am.
That doesn't mean to be an ass to people. It means, find people who are in-tune with your own values, interests and path in life instead of hanging out with all kinds of people and trying to be part of the crowd.
And I think... all these also stems from fear. Fear of being broke, fear of being ostracized, fear of being lonely, etc...
And to overcome all these, takes disciple, confidence, mental resilience, and planning and probably a whole load of other personalities and habits.
Even I struggled when I first left my job. Read about The Fear...
And slowly I overcame it... the thing is... stress, pressure, expectations, need to be managed.
It's like losing weight, you can't sit on your couch and think... "Oh I'm fat, I need to lose weight" and hope to lose weight. You need to do something to get results!
If you have fear of financial insecurity. Then, it needs to be addressed, the question isn't... "There isn't enough money." That's a statement. That doesn't help anything.
The question should be "How much is enough for me to be financially secure?" and do mathematical calculations to derive it. BUT what if after you reached this amount, you still don't feel secure?
Then... THE ANSWER LIES WITHIN
It's no longer a number problem. It's a mentality issue, it's probably fear of something.
How do you get over a fear of cockroaches?
Some people never get over it. Some people start by having slow exposure to them. Other people have to overcome their fear due to need, like me, my family needed me to kill cockroaches in the house. So bobian, I have to step up and just do it.
So... the point of this whole post is... well... how to take care of your mental health?
You gotta do something about it. If you're afraid, insecure, stressed, depressed, etc?
You can't just sit on the couch and remain stressed.
You gotta recognize and admit the fear and insecurity. Then plan and take active steps to break away from it, same as social expectations and financial planning...
It's the same as many other problems. I gotta admit first, that I'm fat, then I need to research what I need to do to get thin, then I need to execute that plan, good eating and regular exercise.
But even after I am 65kg, which is super thin for my height... IF I STILL FEEL FAT!
Then... the answer lies... WITHIN.
Then the problem isn't about me being fat, the REAL problem is actually, my mentality and self esteem, and then, it's the same process again. Admit it, research on it, plan and execute on how to be confident and be comfortable with my size, regardless of what my size is.
(This is an example, I'm not 65kg, and I don't have weight issues.)
I'll leave something I copied from the internet... it's the idea of, the more you want, the more unhappy you will be. The more you strive, the less satisfied you will feel.
And when you're comfortable with your own skin, and contented with life...
That's when life is really good.
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