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To Sam

Trying to stay positive.

To whoever is reading this i hope you are well. i just wanted to ask that around 2 years ago i found myself at a really dark place. it lead me to push everyone i cared for away and to self harm. i am very grateful ti say that i havent harmed myself since. however recently i feel like i am spiraling back to where i was. i dont want to go back ti how i was. i was just wondering if tou had any advice.

Ask Sam

Sam

Hi there,

Mental health is something everyone needs to keep on top of. We need to look after our mind just as much as our body. It's not anyone's fault if they have problems with their mental health. There are things you can do to help yourself get mentally healthy and stay that way.

I hear from lots of people who say they recover from a mental health problem but constantly worried about slipping back into it once they’re better. It's important to remember that recovering from something like depression doesn't mean being happy all of the time. Most people have good days and bad days and it's normal to have short periods where you might feel low or a bit empty. It becomes a problem when these feelings happen more often, to the point that it's all you feel.

Having a low period can be a sign you’re mentally healthy as it’s normal for people to feel sad or low every now and then. Sometimes you might feel like it's more than this though and it could be a sign of a lapse in your mental health. A lapse means you temporarily feel some of your old feelings for a short amount of time. The important thing to remember is that it's not a relapse. A relapse is when you go back into old feelings and habits again all the time. When recovering from a mental health problem it’s normal to have a lapse and is part of the process.

To prevent a lapse turning into a relapse it helps to understand how your thoughts, feelings and actions can all affect each other. If you have negative thoughts they can lead to you feeling negative. This then leads to you doing negative things, like harming yourself - which makes you think more negative thoughts.

To break the cycle and stop yourself spiralling you can try and change one of the steps. You can't really choose how you feel but you can choose how you think and how you act. If you find yourself thinking negative things, stop yourself and try hard to focus on positive things. You can also do positive things that you enjoy and this will affect your thoughts and feelings. Put up positive notes to yourself around your room and on your phone or computer. Staying mentally healthy can sometimes mean taking these steps as they won't always happen by themselves.

I hope this helps, you've done the right thing by talking about it. If you want to talk more about this our counsellors are there for you.

Take care.

Sam

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