Being mentally ill makes every task a million times more difficult.
You are overthinking, exaggerating and overplaying every single situation in your head until you break down and cry.
We’ve all been there… in the past week.
Listen, for the longest I was ashamed to admit that I am super sick, but sooner or later the world would figure it out and I would have to come clean. While I have yet to come out with my diagnosis, people know I am a bit off.
It’s fine. We are all a bit mad.
Meditation has been such an important tool on the recovery journey. It helps me manage my emotions, act less on impulse, and I actually am better at taking care of myself.
Having the ability to slow down and see each moment as it passes is kind of a superpower. The beautiful thing is that we all possess it. And with a bit of practice, we can all use it to our advantage too.
As you know, my favourite book is Waking Up: Searching For Spirituality Without Religion. In it, Sam Harris beautifully present a case of why meditation is not only great for you – scientifically proven – but why you should do it even if it were slightly bad for you.
It’s not bad for you, but if it were, you would still gain so much from doing it.
Only a handful of people are advised to stay away from it – like those with schizophrenia.
But most of us are completely in the safe zone and will get all the benefits, like less anxiety, reduced depression and a higher tolerance for stressful situations.
When others act on impulse, a meditator carefully examines the thoughts and only then decides what appropriate reaction would suit this particular situation.
Relationships improve because you are consciously choosing how to treat others instead of being like a robot that is programmed to act in the same way towards everyone.
But the one thing that truly transformed how I live my life is the reminder of impermanence. Nothing stays the same forever.
It is a helpful mantra when you are in the midst of an anxiety attack over what might happen, or when something tragic does occur. Sure it’s hard to remember this but the more you practise mindfulness the more power this mantra holds.
Everything will be just the way it has to be. Neither good nor bad, but whatever we decide. We can see something as neutral or blow it out of proportions and make it something we cannot handle.
Anyway, the reason why meditation is good for your mental health is that you are not adding things, but removing the unnecessary.
With self-help, you are doing affirmations and visualizing, and that’s all fine, but that’s just adding more shit on the already full pile.
Meditation helps you go underneath it all and face what hurts. Meditation teaches you that you can live without everything because you will always have yourself.
As mentally ill people we usually allow our illness to define us, but with meditation, you get a glimpse underneath the masks, opinions, beliefs, interests, titles, and the illness itself.
We are so much more than everything we are carrying with us. We are so much more than our diagnosis.
We got this.