This page is about how you can become Stronger In The Broken Places. What do I mean by this?
I’ve realized three important life lessons in my journey toward wellness.
1. First, broken times are not permanent. Thoughts and feelings ebb and flow. Tough times pass.
2. Second, dealing with your brokenness in a healthy way gives you self-confidence. You are an overcomer. A survivor.
3. Experiencing brokenness gives you a compassion and a sympathy towards others going through similar difficult circumstances. It places you in a unique position among those you come in contact with.
It makes a person stronger to learn skills enabling them to move forward and overcome difficulties.
Important Questions for Mental Illness Recovery/Resiliency
How are you doing? Are you struggling?
Maybe you struggle with dealing with your anger appropriately.
Or maybe you are overcome with thoughts of depression.
Possibly you haven’t been able to get your anxiety under control.
Whatever you may be dealing with: anger, depression, anxiety, disorganized or intrusive thoughts, or something else… think of what you are struggling with as an indicator that something needs to be addressed.
Maybe it would be easier if people had the emotional equivalent of a “Service Engine Soon” light that cars and trucks have.
This analogy only goes so far. Humans are not motor vehicles. People are infinitely more complex creatures.
A life event (loss of a loved one, divorce, or something else) that makes one person become depressed could have a different effect on someone else.
How does a person become stronger in the broken places?
Well, it is a process.
It starts with paying attention to the indicators on your “emotional dashboard.”
It all starts with Awareness.
What are you feeling, right this second?
What is on your mind?
Identify the emotions you are feeling and the thoughts you are having.
Awareness is crucial.
Awareness is the first step towards change.
Awareness allows you to see what’s wrong.
Awareness helps you see how to heal the brokenness.
Mindfulness is important too.
Healing may include learning some new thought processes, some new habits, and/or some new skills. Use the questions throughout the rest of this page as a kind of gauge to identify where you need to do some emotional work.
How are you at taking care of yourself?
We’re not talking just about personal hygiene. We’re talking about your “mental hygiene.”
Are you taking your medication as it is prescribed?
Are you keeping mental health appointments?
Are you eating right, getting enough sleep, and taking care of your physical health?
Do you have a healthy emotional support network?
What is your self-talk like?
You know, that internal dialogue you have with yourself?
This includes the “tapes” you play in your head.
How do you improve your self-talk? We’ll be exploring that here at this website.
Taking a look at your thoughts and determining some ways to alter negative self-talk is at the core of Cognitive Behavior Therapy.
How do you cope with the stresses of life?
Learning healthy and effective coping strategies will make you a stronger in the broken places.
Knowing how you cope, how you’ve coped with things up until this point, is a simple, yet important piece of information to have.
What is working for you? What is not working?
To sum things up, we’ve talked about awareness, self-care, self-talk, cognitive therapy, and coping strategies. We’ve covered a lot of ground.
These are questions to possibly journal about, or at least use them to raise your awareness of what you may need to do to take care of yourself and improve your likelihood of bouncing back from a potential mental health concern.
In order to see improvement in your symptoms, it is important to see the need to take control of your situation.
Think of life like the game of chess.
Have you ever played chess?
It is essential to develop a strategy while playing.
However, this strategy evolves and changes as you and your opponent make moves.
Chess is a game of improvising.
Response to and awareness of ALL of the pieces on the board-both yours and your opponents’-is crucial.
So, what am I getting at?
Life has made its move.
It’s your turn now. Develop your strategy. Persevere. Fight back.
Think of self-care, coping skills, advanced coping skills, medication, psychotherapy, and a support network as “your pieces on the board.”
Every piece on the board is important, useful, and necessary.
But what happens if you lose a game? If you lose a game, it’s time to go over the game, move by move and analyze why the game ended in a loss.
Then what do you do?
Learn from your mistakes. And then? Start a new game. Keep on playing. Keep on learning. Keep improving.
Bounce back. You will start to become more resilient.
You will become… Stronger in the Broken Places.
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