One of my favorite theorists, Abraham Maslow said, “I suppose it is tempting, if the only tool you have is a hammer, to treat everything as if it were a nail.”
When we only have the idea that we are “sick” and will be “for life”….
We are limiting ourselves to a life of less.
Once we are able to see that there is nothing “wrong” with us, that we don’t need someone to “fix” us then we are able to embark on an amazing journey of hope, healing and ultimately finding happiness in a life well lived.
We have to start seeing that we are not “broken”. We may feel broken…
We may feel really, really fucked up.
Our life may be a complete disaster.
Yet if we can approach this journey with the eyes of an explorer…
If we can start learning from those who are willing to teach us instead of those who need to define and diagnosis us as defective and disordered….
Then we can begin to see that we are enough…
That we are fully capable…
That we are creative….
And that we can discover and live our best life vs settling for a life of “less than” and “never enough”.
We can choose to live life in that paradigm of illness where we struggle each day to observe ourselves and watch for and manage “symptoms”…
Or we can choose to live a life of more than enough where our struggles become opportunities and our pain becomes the basis for a healing balm.
But isn’t “mental illness” a physical disease?
Yes and no.
There are indeed physical causes for chronic mental health struggles; there are real health issues that can show up in ones life and look like “mental illness” BUT these are mainly issues that we can resolve by learning how to resolve lifestyle changes to support health instead of those that create sickness.
There are food sensitivities, allergies, chemical sensitivities…all things that we can do something about but that we never hear about.
There is also the impact of drama, trauma and dysfunction that leaves us feeling hopeless, helpless and powerless and that can leave us feeling overwhelmed, depressed, suicidal.
That happens when we think that death is our only “out”.
But what we don’t hear about is that those are all things that we can learn to overcome instead of living in overwhelm.
I’m not saying that creating and living in “mental health” is easy.
In fact learning to live beyond the idea that “diagnosis” was more harmful than helpful can be one of the most challenging things we do as we learn to live beyond the idea that a pill can fix every ill…
So while a drug free approach to learning to live in mental health vs managing mental illness “for life” is not necessarily easy and may not be for everyone….
It’s really not the rocket science we’ve been led to believe it is.
Doing this kind of work?
Takes time, commitment and effort.
It’s not a passive process.
It’s something we do not something that is done to us.
NOTE: For the past six decades society has been programmed by marketing and media to believe in the “chemical imbalance” theory of what is called “mental illness”. Yet at the same time there have been many clinicians who know this to be a false premise of the human condition. Sometimes to start seeing ourselves as “capable” we have to overcome the idea that we are powerless; that there is no hope for anything more or anything better.
Some places you can read more about how pharmaceuticals and the “medical model” took over the mental health industry:
Disclaimer: this site does not provide medical or therapeutic advice; if you are concerned for your health or well being please contact your personal physician or therapist. Do NOT just “go off” psychotropic drugs; to do so can put one at great risk of increased feelings of overwhelm and extreme states of distress. If you are interested to learn more about how to safely reduce reliance on or withdrawal from these drugs please begin here: www.proactiveplanning.us
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