As I look around the room it seems as if I finally have a moment to myself. I hear complete silence it feels like pure magic. This Xanadu scene is a surreal moment for me. These are the moments I want to bask in forever. All I really desire is more moments like this with no interruptions from the phone, my daughter and bill collectors. Is it possible to have more quiet moments to myself? I believe finding time to reconnect with my mental health is important. I have to make more mental dates like this because they feel like paradise.
As women we give and give of ourselves effortlessly. We make time for everyone but never schedule time for ourselves. It is important to make time to find out where we are mentally. Sometimes feelings of depression, heaviness, being burnt out and feeling drain tends to suffocate us. We have to be determined to make more time to say yes to our mental health. In the African American community black women are considered to be strong all the time due to our cultural background. However, deep down we are cracking under pressure and need the time to regroup and plugin to how we feel.
In order to solve the issue of mind over matter we have to be willing to address our stress mentally, emotionally and physically. According to Ebony Magazine, an article published in October 2012 on mental health stated, “African Americans are 20% more likely to report having serious psychological distress than non-Hispanic Whites, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Services.” This is an issue because more African American women continue to suffer in silence instead of reaching out for help when it comes to their mental health.
The silence can only be broken if we take to time to hear our thoughts, face our emotions and get the help we truly need. A woman who smiles on the outside but screams on the inside is a woman who is deteriorating slowly. It is time to peel back the layers, face the issue and find solutions to preserve our mental state. It is all about mind over matter!
Below are a couple tips to check in with your mental health:
- Take time off. Schedule a day to check in with your emotional and mental self.
- Address the issue. If you are dealing with extreme issues be honest with yourself and face them head on.
- Get professional assistance. If you cannot deal with the mental or emotional stress find a therapist, counselor or consult spiritual leadership in your church to help you connect the dots.
- Be Vulnerable. Never feel like you are a weakling because you cannot handle the weight by yourself. It takes strength to reach out when you need help. You were never meant to be an island alone.
- Create a support system. When you are living in an environment by yourself it is important to create a trusted support system especially if you are a single parent.