For someone who has never struggled with mental health or been to a counseling session, the process of counseling may be a mystery or some “you go there to get help, they fix you” kind of mentality. Unfortunately, if you have been part of the process, you know this is not the case. The Huffington Post came out with a new article on the topic of mental health that I think both clients of mental health and Church officials/congregation members who have a desire to support people who struggle with mental health should read.
Tragedy is something we experience in our fallen world in a multitude of different ways. From the internationally known wildfires in California that lead to people being displaced, to the war crimes in Eastern Aleppo in Syria that have sent out haunting photos, we see these images, hear their stories, and feel helpless and hopeless to enact change. Then we have the seemingly endless local tragedies of murders, rape, and car crashes which up end families and affect whole communities.
In the midst of this chaos stands the Church. In this darkness, there is light in Christ. And in the trauma someone receives, one can be restored. So what can the Church do to help?
Depression is more than just feeling a little sadness. It’s not just genetic or environmental, but can be due to trauma, grief and loss, or chemical imbalance. Further, there is a physiological manifestation of the depressive symptoms. With winter season just about here and untreated depression is costing individuals and others billions, treatment is something we would highly encourage you look into.
Holidays are a time of joy, peace, and coming together. But for some, this is a time of being reminded of painful memories, being put into a room with people who you do not like or have disappointed, and being triggered to possibly relapsing with depression, diet, or alcohol. The holiday blues are definitely something many people with mental health and substance use disorders experience.
Below is an infographic that addresses what the holiday blues are and a few ideas to consider to fight them. (If you need more, we actually gave several ideas for people and those that love them to do to fight off the holiday blues) Maybe the most important part of the infographic below is the last bit of text that states “The holiday blues are short-term. Be patient. Take things week by week or day by day.”
Previously, we talked about the concerns of how mental health and substance abuse disorders can become exasperated around the holidays and ways to handle going to family and friend events or being okay with staying home. One of the biggest concerns for people who struggle with these problems is how their supportive relationships interact with them. With any kind of recovery, we must always include in the treatment and faith process the loved ones of the people who are struggling. So today, I am talking to you and how you can help make the holidays better for people who struggle with mental health.
The holidays are upon us with several days that allow us to take time for remembrance, spend time with family, and look back on life. For those that struggle with mental health and substance abuse disorders, this time may actually be a very difficult period. Whether you are trying to avoid using, but going to family functions where alcohol is in high supply and siblings or parents who you use to drink with or struggling with trauma symptoms including mood swings and flashbacks which are triggered by memories your family brings up, this may be a hard time of the year.
When I talk about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, ADHD for short, invariably I get all kinds of comments. Many times, those beliefs are incorrect. Unfortunately, people continue to harbor many inaccurate beliefs and so we need to address these myths and instead offer facts to you.
A new article on The Wall Street Journal hypothesis’ that Alexa, and all voice-assistant devices, will be and are currently being used for more than just search results. The WSJ article notes that the developers of Alexa have discovered users are treating their devices more like relationships.
Crisis is an inevitability. It’s not a matter of if, but when. Further, people act differently when in crisis and so a well thought out plan is needed. Even better, a plan that is revisited and practiced regularly will reduce the impact of a crisis. Finally, proactivity reduces being reactive and instead allows a person or ministry instead to respond. To do this, you need to have a crisis plan.