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Why I’m so Happy

blessedBy: Angela Englander
March 6, 2019
People often ask why I’m so happy… Here’s my secret:
 
Each day I wake up on this side of the ground and I am thankful I have been gifted with another day.
 
I turn over to see someone I love deeply sleeping beside me and I feel very blessed.
 
I go downstairs and open a fridge with food inside and I’m able to take deep breaths with lungs that work and nourish a body that is receptive and working in partnership with my mind. I appreciate the privileges I have both within myself and in my surroundings and I feel so honored.
 
I fill up my day with conversations with the most amazing people who are working their butts off to heal and take back their lives. I am amazed and inspired by their courage to heal and take their lives back. I am honored they chose me to be on their healing journey with them.
 
On my dinner break I’m able to text and call and talk to friends, family and my partner who love me and care for me.
 
I work long days and I always feel like it is a miracle when I have made it home safely after my long drive.
 
Hundreds of times I take a deep breath and feel so grateful, so appreciative, so blessed. Not a moment goes by where I take these things for granted because each day, for many years I’ve seen these things taken from people. I’ve seen everything that could possibly be lost, be lost. I’ve seen the great tragedies of life, but they are not my tragedies…
 
So what’s my secret? I can appreciate the things others take for granted and overlook and assume will be there tomorrow. I know there is no guarantee.

I’ve Been in the Mental Health System for Years, Why am I not Getting Better?

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I’ve Been in the Mental Health System for Years, Why am I Not Getting Better?

The unfortunate reality of our mental health system is that most people who get into the system, stay in the system. Intense symptoms and challenges and unbearable thoughts bring most people in. Life may feel as though it’s crumbling around you, as though the life you once had or the life you wanted to have are just distant memories and day dreams. It doesn’t have to stay that way though.

QM0815-FT6-manC-p21)The focus has been on surface level symptoms, not the root cause of the struggles

While the symptoms are what brought you to the mental health system in the first place, they are just the messages and signals your brain and body is using to communicate with you. Symptoms don’t appear out of thin air, they happen for a reason. If your treatment has been focused on managing the symptoms, supressing the symptoms, or getting rid of the symptoms, your healing will be as surface level as your treatment. From my experience, once you get to the root cause and begin to understand why those symptoms are there, that is when the deeper change and healing can begin.

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2)The root cause for your struggles hasn’t changed

It only makes sense that your body and brain would keep sending you the same message over and over if it’s needs are never met. Blood sugar changes, hormonal changes, food allergies and intolerances, illnesses and diseases, traumatic experiences, being unsafe and side effects of medications all can cause symptoms that resemble mental illness. When you begin to take a step back and see the patterns and when the symptoms arise the story you begin to see will be very different from what you saw prior. Once you can see when the most intense symptoms are happening and what has led to them, real and lasting changes can start to take shape.

Set+Yourself+Free+24x243)You are stuck in the system

The unfortunate reality is our system is not designed to cure people or make them fully better, it is designed to manage their symptoms. Ask most doctors, psychiatrists, neurologists or other people working in the mental health system and they will tell you that for the rest of your life you will be living this way, battling these symptoms and struggling with the mental illness(s) you’ve been diagnosed with. It isn’t their fault, they are funding by pharmaceutical companies and trained to prescribe lifelong medications to incurable people. They are just doing what they know and understand. I’ve met next to no people who did make a full recovery simply from being in the medical system. In order to heal you need to be able to step outside the system and access the care of people who know recovery is possible because they have seen it and believe in it. The perspective, beliefs, and expectations of your support people is going to make a huge difference in what path your life is on and where you mental health journey is taking you.

hope4)You have lost hope

The most unfortunate thing is that for most people they lost hope for themselves. The doctor or psychiatrist (the head of their health team) has told them they will be sick forever, they will be on medications forever and this is their new normal. The psychiatrist may have told them they will never finish school, never have a healthy relationship, they will never go back to work and that their life will be managing their mental illness. It’s a pretty grim and dark thing to say to someone who is already struggling so much. It only makes sense that when offered the choice of the intense pain and suffering they are experiencing or ending it all, many people turn to suicide. Life with intense mental illness symptoms can feel like a life that is not worth living. That is why it’s so important to have a professional in your life that can hold onto the hope for you until you are able to hold onto some hope for yourself. If the choice is between losing hope and risking your life in the free system or investing in a therapist who will help you regain hope and rebuild your life, the decision really is simple. If you die, the money won’t matter anyways. There is no price tag that can be put on your life.

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If there is one thing I’ve learned over the past two decades volunteering, working and studying in the mental health system, it’s that healing is possible. I’ve seen people heal and regain their quality of life after countless diagnosis and so many years of suffering. From people who have just had a traumatic experience and gets help quickly to heal quickly, to children who are able to lessen learning challenges and ADHD symptoms, to people who have numerous diagnosis but forge a healing plan and high quality of life anyways, to those who dedicate a year or more to ensuring they understand their symptoms and needs and hear their body and brains communication so they can meet the requests, anything is possible. Miracles happen, people heal. It isn’t the popular message people get, but I know it’s true because I’ve seen countless clients do it, and I’ve done it myself.

If you have any questions or would like to book a session with a skilled therapist who believes in healing. Please contact angela@waystowellbeing.ca Happy Healing!

How to Improve Your Relationships? A Free Online Course on Effective Communication

The Couple Connection ( http://thecoupleconnection.net/) is a great online resource designed for couples and parents who wish to improve their relationships.

The two free interactive online courses

  • How to Argue Better
  • Changes for Me & Us

are availabe at no charge to anyone who wishes to learn new relationship-building skills and work through some personal issues that stand in the way of healthy relationships.

The website also offers psychoeducation materials on communication skills, healthy relationship dynamics and much more. Continue reading How to Improve Your Relationships? A Free Online Course on Effective Communication

ADVOCACY: Paving the way to a better future

Advocacy is the art of communicating your needs or the needs of someone else in a way that other people can understand for the purpose of fulfilling the individuals needs. Advocacy is especially important when the individual is in a vulnerable position and their voice isn’t being heard by influential people in their life and community. Advocacy allows people to express their views and concerns, access information and services, defend and promote their rights and responsibilities, and explore their choices and options. Continue reading ADVOCACY: Paving the way to a better future

Partners for Mental Health Campaign to Reduce Stigma in the Workplace

Partners for Mental Health is a non-profit organization that is changing the way people see those struggling with mental health issues. They conduct campaigns to decrease stigma and encorage government funding for mental health services in Canada. And they do this with the help of volunteers from across the country.

Partners for Mental Health encourage everyone to take positive action and raise awareness about mental health and to support those in need. Continue reading Partners for Mental Health Campaign to Reduce Stigma in the Workplace