Embrace Sadness

Sad woman in black cardigan near trees

See Where Sadness Takes You

Don’t fret it. Don’t hide it. Don’t bury it. See where it takes you. See what it makes you feel. See what thoughts it brings to the surface. We all tend to shy away for sadness. We all tend to use the unconscious, immature defense mechanism known as denial. We all tend to carry on like sadness is “not me.” But it is you! It is us! There are times when sadness becomes prevalent and we have to stare it in the eye and tell it, “You’re back . . . what are you going to teach me this time?”

Sadness is not something that should bring you embarrassment; it happens for a reason. Your job is to find out that reason and learn from it. If you suppress your sadness, do you think that it’ll go away? Maybe only temporarily. Suppression means that you are consciously moving a negative emotion or thought into your unconscious and no longer dealing with it in the present moment. But one day, it’ll come back out and you’ll have to encounter it once more.

So why deal with suppressed sadness at a future date when you can just deal with it today? Don’t shy away. Sadness is here to teach you a lesson; learn from it!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

I Am A Great Communicator

Businesswomen talking and smiling in front of laptop

Positive Affirmation: Great Communication Skills

“I am a great communicator because I focus on what others have to say rather than dominating the conversation. People look up to me not because I have impressive things to say, but because I have great listening skills and they appreciate the time and attention that I give them. I talk at the right time and people pay more attention to what I say because I’m usually attentively listening to what they have to say. When I talk less and listen more, others are more willing to hear what I have to say as compared to when I talk more and listen less. I am a great communicator because I use empathy in my conversations and feel the other person out, especially when they are in pain and emotional turmoil. I am a great communicator and others appreciate my presence!”

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Experience Your Sadness

Sad woman leaning on windowsill staring outside

Not Running Away From Sadness

Whenever we experience sadness, we tend to bury it right away rather than allowing it to linger. This is because nobody likes the feeling of sadness so it’s easier to just brush it under the carpet and clean it up later. The problem with doing so is that you are not processing what is making you feel sad in the first place. Even though sadness is an uncomfortable emotion, you want to fully immerse yourself in it and see what thoughts and feelings will come out of it.

For some, it’s not an easy process because they feel like their ego is being jeopardized. They believe that if they feel sad, their masculinity is being threatened. For others on the opposite end of the spectrum, they tend to spend too much time dwelling over their sadness, experiencing it all day and never letting go of it. You don’t want to be at any end of the spectrum; the happy medium is always best.

This involves experiencing sadness when it kicks in but also knowing when to turn it off when certain circumstances arise. If you’re at work, it’s better to suppress it for the time being and revisit it later on. But if you’re at home and have nothing important to do, you can try practicing mindfulness while also becoming in touch with your sadness. This will allow you to process the thoughts associated with your sadness and potentially help you recover from it.

It’s always better to process your sadness rather than leaving it unhinged. There’s almost always a reason that you are feeling sad and you need to get to the bottom of it. Don’t be afraid to reveal new thoughts and feelings which are foreign to you; this is the process of growing in life. And always remember that you are never alone in experiencing sadness; millions of people all over the world are experiencing it with you this very moment.

What are some things that you are sad about?

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

You Are Free Of Emotional Pain

Red human eye with pink liquid dripping out

Positive Affirmation: Emotional Pain

“I am free of emotional pain because I am in tune with my emotions and I am in control of them at all times. Even when people hurt me, I know how to immediately recognize negative emotions and process them effectively. I don’t allow emotional pain to hold me back in life. Emotions are like clouds that come and go; I observe and process them and allow them to float away. I am in control of how I feel today and tomorrow!”

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Being A Great Sport

Angry white man wearing a red tank top with hands on face

Maintaining Composure During Times Of Adversity

You will encounter many situations in life where you will lose your cool and make a fool out of yourself. Let’s hope that those situations are in the past and that you can now prevent future ones from occurring. But we all know that life is very unpredictable; one minute you’re on top of the world and the next you’re fuming and steam is coming out of your ears. The key is not avoiding distressing situations as sometimes life just throws you in the middle of them without any control on your part.

But just because you lack control in certain situations does not mean that you should allow them to throw you off your game. You have to be quick to react and come up with effective solutions on the spot while maintaining proper composure. By doing this, you will avoid many awkward encounters, problems with your job and burned bridges. Anyone can act appropriate from time to time, but not anyone can be a great sport at all times.

Maintaining composure during times of adversity is not easy depending on the situation that you find yourself in. It’s so much easier to just blow up, get your anger out of the way and move on with your day. But what’s easier is not always most effective; this applies to anything in life. Oftentimes, the easier solution brings upon temporary fixes that end up crumbling when more adversity is encountered down the road.

You have to find a way to remain composed at all times, even when dealing with conflicting and uncomfortable emotions. This applies to your professional life as well as your social; the more consistent you remain in your display of emotions, the more trust people will have in you. This is all based on behavioral psychology; people are turned off by hotheads and attracted to those who are cool, calm and collected.

So the next time that you encounter a situation where you feel like you might lose your cool, take a step back and remind yourself, “This too shall pass. Just play it cool and try to make the most out of it without displaying your frustrating emotions.” The more you practice being a great sport, the easier it will become for you to handle life’s conflicts and roadblocks.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

When Patients Cry

Sad black woman crying with hand on face

We Are Human Too

Whether cancer patients, intellectually disabled patients or behavioral health patients, one thing remains in common for all of them: the deep feelings which they experience on a daily basis. The familiar uphill battle which they face every day, involving digesting their diagnosis, taking their medications and maintaining a smile on their faces, is what makes their experiences more difficult than others. And for all of those reasons, patients sometimes need to release, and that release comes in the form of tears.

Society does a great job at looking down upon crying, especially when it comes to men. Men are supposed to be masculine creatures who only display strength and leadership. And if they are caught displaying feminine traits or acts such as crying, they are looked down upon.

But crying has nothing to do with gender; it has to do with being human! We all experience emotions, pain, difficulties and even mental illness. Most of us can relate to being a patient in the hospital at one point in our lives; not necessarily a mental health patient, but anything related to being sick or injured.

We have all experienced what it feels like to be admitted to a hospital and to be thrown into a gown for several days. Now imagine the many patients who remain in the hospital for months at a time, some even for years in state psychiatric hospitals! Do you still look down upon men who cry?

Being a patient is one of the most difficult roles experienced by a person: you lose your confidence, you’re filled with worry and you place your hope onto the hands of another person. For mental health patients, not only are they in the hospital or following up as outpatients, but they have their mental struggles to deal with on a daily basis.

And even for people who aren’t patients, crying is a natural process that is very normal to experience. When we cry, we are processing our emotions and painful thoughts, and shedding them away in the form of physical tears. But when we hold ourselves back from crying, we are containing the negative emotions and pain within, worsening our overall well-being.

Whether it’s our tears dripping down our faces or our patients’, at the end of the day, we are human too.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

When All Things Go Wrong

Young blonde woman having a bad day and covering face with hands outdoors

Properly Handling Bad Days

A bad day is subjective and depends on the person who is experiencing it. What may be considered bad for one person may be minor for another; there are no universal bad days. But what is universal is the pain that one experiences. No one can deny your pain, even if they laugh in your face or behind your back.

Unfortunately, there are days when all things that can go wrong do go wrong. Many vulnerable people can lose their cool, causing their day to spiral more out of control than it already has. Their emotions may get them into trouble at work, school or even in their social circle.

Humans are extremely emotional creatures. Every action involves an emotion to a certain degree: happiness, sadness, anxiety, indifference, etc. Emotions are also very fragile depending on the experience. Some people can hold on to their emotions a little more firmly, while others more easily crack like when jumping on dissolving ice.

The proper way to handle bad days is to remain cool, calm and collected. The last thing that you want to do is to react towards a negative experience. This means that you allow your emotions to lose control based on the severity and nature of the situation. If you allow this to happen, things usually just get worse.

You need to learn how to remain more on the neutral side when all things go wrong. Try to regain lost ground by taking a step backwards, inhaling a few deep breaths and cooling down by splashing some cold water on your face. Perhaps also try some mindfulness or meaningful prayers to disconnect yourself from the environment.

The goal is to return back to a comfortable state of mind, by resetting yourself emotionally. No matter how badly your day is going, you are still healthy and alive and that is what matters the most! Don’t allow the nuisances of life to distract you from what is important. Always remain positive even when positivity feels distant!

Neutralize the ugly features of a day by being thankful, maintaining your appreciation for life and resetting yourself mentally and emotionally!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Be Careful What You Say To Others

Graffiti of blue-haired woman suffering from karma on wall of underpass by sewage

When Karma Bites Back

We often allow life’s circumstances to influence our emotional states, sometimes resulting in our wishing bad upon others. The problem is that many people don’t have a good grasp on their emotional states, allowing life to regulate their feelings rather than the other way around. When this happens, we end up saying things we often regret later.

Karma is based on the principle that one’s intent and actions influence his or her future. By wishing bad upon others or simply saying nasty things out of anger, life ends up punishing the individual with similar actions that were wished upon the other person. Whether you believe in karma or not, it is very prevalent and many people can attest to it.

The point is not to prevent karma from affecting your life. What is more important is to be a nice person and not wish bad upon others. You have to learn how to control your emotions, no matter how frustrating some situations may be. Wishing bad things to happen onto somebody else is not just wrong, it’s immoral and evil.

If karma is real, it was probably created in order to teach us lessons on our behavior and patterns of thought. Karma provides us with life experiences which teach as well as correct us on our actions and words. Without karma, many people would continue to repeat the same destructive patterns.

Where karma comes from is something we will probably never discover. Karma may be God’s way of teaching us how to behave, or it can be a universal force that has been around since the beginning of time. One thing is for sure: many people can admit to experiencing the painful nature of karma.

At the end of the day, it is normal to experience negative emotions and frustrating situations; it’s called life. But you have to learn how to deal with these uncomfortable situations and regulate your emotions, before you say something that you’ll regret later. Don’t ruin someone else’s day just because your’s may have been ruined.

Deal with life’s situations. Properly regulate your emotions. Avoid karma and maintain peace and happiness in your surroundings.

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)

Put Your Anger Aside

Young angry man wearing black t-shirt

Anger Issues

Life will always deliver you negative news; it’s a strong feature of the circle of life that cannot be avoided. There is no way to go throughout life without experiencing negativity and the pain that comes along with it. But the anger that it makes you feel is not necessary; actually, it can become very self-destructive if not handled properly.

Anger is a strong feeling of annoyance, displeasure or hostility. It is natural to feel it but very counterproductive; it can prevent you from moving forward in life, affect your relationships and promote stress, anxiety and depression. The more you experience anger, the more you will attract this feeling into your life, making you very bitter and unpleasant to be around.

Some people have anger issues because they have made it a pattern to react to certain situations or words with anger; it has become an automatic emotion for them. And the more anger that they experience, the more situations have the potential to turn into anger-triggers, fueling the pattern of their emotional turmoil.

Learn to place your anger issues aside by finding an activity which allows you to transfer your anger, such as weight lifting; the strong effort required to lift heavy weights can be fueled by your anger. Believe it or not, dissolving your anger into a physical activity gives you more energy and makes you feel better!

Please do not be angry! Life is too short and sweet to waste your beautiful time and energy on such a negative emotion. Let us come together and be happy; this is the meaning behind The DSM Ready Movement!

Are you Ready? (This is Defeating Stigma Mindfully)