I was remiss in not acknowledging World Mental Health Day this past Tuesday, October 10th especially since some of my favorite peeps are living with Mental Health issues!
I’m not big on labels. I know I’m not suppose to use the word ‘crazy’ but I’m very close to this community if not part of it and they know I mean no disrespect. People are sometimes labeled ‘crazy’ or ‘Mentally Ill’ just because they don’t follow expectations of society. That is just pure nonsense!
Really, who’s to say who is Mentally Ill or Mentally Healthy? I was providing Reiki on a Locked Psychiatric Floor today. One of the patients said to me, “Oh you’re so beautiful but you need a better hairdresser to make you even more beautiful!” Ha ha! This statement would not be acceptable in the workplace but Does speaking the truth make you ill? If we all told and lived our truths a bit more, less of us would be unable to cope. I told her I would look into a new stylist and that her I loved her for the compliment and then gave her a big hug.
Another patient told me about some visions he was having of Jesus and energy exchanges and one other said he was my uncle Rob reincarnated. I don’t dismiss either of these statements quickly. Some of most brilliant, sensitive and highly evolved people in the world (and the next) believe and have experienced Jesus, energy visions and reincarnation memories. Yet these people I meet with are in the hospital needing care both medicinal and psychiatric because they are out of balance and their state of mind has too much control over their behaviors which are not able to be absorbed in the community. This imbalance does not allow them to be the best that they can be in this world and that is when intervention is needed.
If you think you are immune to Mental Health Issues think again. Really. Think again. I was that person once upon a time. I thought there was a big division between ‘us and them’ and then- bam -just like that it hit me. Down, down, down the deep, dark rabbit hole I went. Even now if I am not fastidious about my spiritual practices and vigilant about using only organic products I start sinking. The trick is to be hyper-aware of your feelings and state of mind so that any little imbalance or discomfort alerts you to take healing action whatever that may be for you. These healing modalities vary for each person. For some, medication is needed, others need more sleep, some meditation, an outing with friends, etc. The healing options are endless. Sometimes we are tempted to wait this imbalance/discomfort out thinking and hoping and praying that it will go away but if you have a chronic issue it is not likely to go away and delaying treatment is not a good idea. Don’t wait until you are in the depths of despair or at the height of a manic episode to reach for help.
People wait and are reluctant to discuss their experiences with Mental Illness because there is a stigma to it still in some circles. This is what comes to mind for some people when they hear someone is struggling with Mental Illnesses like OCD, anxiety, Bi-Polar, etc.
The reality of this image does exist but it is extreme. More often it is the face of me or you, of your mother, friend or spouse struggling in some way, still functioning but not optimally.
Everyday I work with clients who are struggling with Mental Health Issues. I salute them for knowing that they need to address the problems, for admitting that they need help, for being brave enough for reaching out and dragging themselves into my office week after week to work on themselves in order to be the best that they can be.
All the services I provide help people (including myself) work on becoming the best possible version of themselves. Yoga, Meditation, Life Coaching, Reiki, Crystal Healing, a combination of aforementioned plus education via reading and journaling are all a part of the health journey that I have found lifesaving.
Of course I am not claiming that these things alone will necessarily eradicate mental illness although it does happen. (See this movie documentary if you can: Heal to see just how powerful the mind and alternative health methods are in improving our minds and bodies.) Some advanced and deeply rooted issues need medical and medicinal interventions but all these Alternative Health Services are a great support for the person suffering and will give them a chance to take some control in their own healing process. It is important that we not give control of our healing away to anyone. The patient knows, deep down – sometimes way deep down – what they need and certainly they should play a part in their own healing.
That is one major goal I have with all of my clients – to get them to touch their own inner knowledge, their higher knowledge, their intuition. Through all of these methods and practices we move closer to that higher power we all possess but have let go amidst the craziness and conditioning of the world.
According to the World Health Organization, NIMH and APA these are recent statistics on this issue:
- 1 in 5 (or 43.8 million) adults experience mental illness in a given year.
- 1 in 25 (or 10 million) adults experience a serious mental illness.
- 1 in 100 (or 2.4 million) live with schizophrenia.
- 2.6% (or 6.1 million) of Americans have bipolar disorder.
- 6.9% (or 16 million) suffer from severe depression.
- 18.1% (or 42 million) live with an anxiety disorder.
Mental Health is clearly a major issue which won’t be fixed quickly or easily but we can do our little part by making ourselves aware of the prevalence of Mental Illness and encouraging people suffering with it at whatever level to talk about it without shame, to reach out for help and to have hope for healing.
Lisa Hassett, Reiki Therapist, Life Coach, CYT
Healing For Body, Mind & Spirit
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Reiki of Greater Boston
Healing for Body, Mind & Spirit
160 School Street, Suite 1-1, Waltham, MA 02451
160 School Street, Suite 1-1
Waltham, MA 02451