Welcome to Part 2 of my Mental Health Journey. As promised, this section will be much happier and hopefully inspiring. Anyway, let’s carry on with the story. If you haven’t read part 1, you can check it out here!
The second part of my mental health journey highly involves work. I have worked in retail since I started working, but it wasn’t always “sunshine and rainbows”. I have been through a lot to get to where I am today. You can read more about my retail experience whilst dealing with social and generalised anxiety in this blog post.
Although, despite all of this, I have defied all odds. I have defied all the people in my first job who said that “Retail isn’t for me.”. Because I am now a supervisor at my current job. The management saw potential in “shy and anxious” me. I am trusted to run a shop by myself now and I feel confident in myself and my abilities. This was extremely difficult for me before, as I never thought I was good enough to do anything that involves any responsibility. I am finally done putting myself down.
Trust me, if I could go to my first workplace and tell them to “suck it” I would! I feel like I have achieved the almost impossible and I will always be thankful.
After my Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, I started to realise that the therapy has helped with my anxiety but not so much with my depression. It took a big hit to make me realise this though, as I fell down a metaphorical pit that I never thought I would get out of. It randomly hit me all at once.
So, I went to the doctors and asked them about medication. In the end they put me on some anti anxiety and depression tablets called Sertraline and I am still on them to this day! Honestly, I can’t tell you how much these tablets have helped me to get to where I am today. After the first few weeks getting used to them, I immediately felt a change in myself. A very positive change and feeling that I hadn’t felt in years.
Although, I know that being on medication doesn’t sound much like an achievement but to me it is. My biggest achievement is that I am no longer ashamed of being on medication for my mental health. I will happily bring it up in conversation and not feel weak and ashamed like I did when I first started taking them. Honestly, at the beginning I believed that I had failed but it was this very “failure” that lead me to my successes.
The greatest thing to come out of everything that I have been through is this blog. I never thought that I could turn this experience into something positive but it’s more than possible. It is possible through the power of blogging.
It all started just over a year ago when I discovered the blog, Anxious Lass. I absolutely fell in love with it and her content and aspired to do the same thing almost immediately. It seemed so amazing to me that it was possible to turn my mental health into something that could potentially help many people.
About a year later, I started my blog “ColourfulHope”. I have had some ups and downs with it and even gave up for a brief amount of time. Although, I just ended up missing it and restarting my blog all over again. I’ll try not to have a breakdown and delete my blog again. I promise!
Writing this blog has really helped to improve my mental health. I’d definitely recommend starting a mental health blog if you haven’t already and you have tips or experiences to share. Getting all of this out in the open is so therapeutic.
Travelling and Concerts
Yet another more recent mental health achievement is how I have been slowly defeating my travel anxiety.
Back in June, I travelled all the way to London on the train to see BTS in concert. The thought of going to a concert itself has always given me anxiety and I ended up having the time of my life. I’m so happy that I defeated my travel anxiety and went to see them!
Also, a few weeks ago, I travelled up to Manchester BY MYSELF to visit my friend. It was an over 4 hour journey. Trust me, if this was a couple of years ago I wouldn’t have been able to imagine going this far on my own. Once again though, I pushed through my fear and when I was there I ended up having an amazing time. I would not hesitate to go and visit her again!
My main point is that you shouldn’t let your mental health get in the way of what you want to do. I know it’s difficult but I hope these stories help you to realise that anything is possible. Even if you are in the darkest place. You can get through it and defy all odds if you are determined enough.
At one point a few years ago I wished that I wasn’t even alive. But now, because I didn’t give up. I am living my best life and I really want the same for you all.
Let me know in the comments, something that you would love to achieve over the next couple of years. No goal is too big or small. Everyone has something to live for!
I love you all,