Minority Mental Health Awareness Post #2

::: Minority Mental Health Awareness :::

👉Treatment Issues👈

Black/African Americans today are over-represented in our jails and prisons.
People of color account for 60 percent of the prison population. Black/African Americans also account for 37 percent of drug arrests, but only14 percent of regular drug users (illicit drug use is frequently associated with self-medication among people with mental illnesses).
Because less than 2 percent of American Psychological Association members are Black/African American, some may worry that mental health care practitioners are not culturally competent enough to treat their specific issues.
This is compounded by the fact that some Black/African American patients have reported experiencing racism and microaggression from therapists.
Stigma and judgment prevents Black/African Americans from seeking treatment for their mental illnesses.
Research indicates that Black/African Americans believe that mild depression or anxiety would be considered “crazy” in their social circles.
Furthermore, many believe that discussions about mental illness would not be appropriate even among family.

👉👉What struggles do you deal with in facing the stigma of Mental Health?

Minority Mental Health Awareness Month

::: Minority Mental Health Awareness :::

According to a study conducted by Ward, Wiltshire, Detry, and Brown in 2013:

👉Black/African Americans hold beliefs related to stigma, psychological openness, and help-seeking, which in turn affects their coping behaviors.

👉Generally speaking, the participants in this study were not very open to acknowledging psychological problems, but they were somewhat open to seek mental health services.

👉Thirty percent of participants reported having a mental illness or receiving treatment for a mental illness.

👉Black/African Americans men are particularly concerned about stigma.

👉Cohort effects, exposure to mental illness, and increased knowledge of mental illness are factors which could potentially change beliefs about symptoms of mental illness.

👉Participants appeared apprehensive about seeking professional help for mental health issues, which is consistent with previous research. However, participants were willing to seek out some form of help.

👉👉If you know anyone or are someone who has been affected by a mental health illness, please seek the guidance of a mental health professional! As you would for a broken leg, a sprain, or physical health issue, your mental health should be treated the same!

5 Key Questions to Help You Move Outside of Your Comfort Zone

We do things based off habit.

Whether the habit is good or bad, we do it because its “comfortable.”

A lot of times we do things that we know we truly desire to change, we want to change, and we want to do better, but the comfort of the habit will always give us the same results that we are used to, therefore we stick with it.

This is truly what is called a comfort zone.

And sadly your comfort zone isn’t always so “comfortable” as in comforting you in a healthy and positive way.

Think about it; do you have an unhealthy comfort zone in your personal relationships? Your job? Your work ethic?

Procrastination is a comfort zone for some, because we know that if we don’t push the limit, we won’t fail. Due to fear of failure, we birth the mentality of procrastination, which can keep us feeling “stuck,” unmotivated, and frustrated!

So what can you do about this?

One thing that we often do when we are stuck in comfort is fear the unknown of trying something new. Although we truly want something new, something good, we fear the change.

So for my non-writers and my writers, this exercise is for you if you want to take a step forward in psychologically getting yourself out of the “comfort zone” that’s keeping you from reaching a new level of success and happiness in your life and business.

1. Ask yourself, “What about my comfort zone do I truly like?” – This question is important because we go through life DOING, forming a habit, without CONSCIOUSLY thinking, so bringing awareness to a habit, creates room for change

2. Ask yourself, “What am I truly wanting in my life and from my life through the actions and decisions that I make?” – This question touches on what question #1 details, but this question also leads you into thinking more in depth about the “bigger picture” of your desires and goals

3. Ask yourself, “What can I do today to create a change in my thinking? What can I do today to create a change in my actions?” – We often look outside of ourselves for the answers in how we want to create change, but in reality, we know how, we just don’t question and ask ourselves in the right frame of mind. Having these questions, creates direction subconsciously to began a thinking pattern for change

4. Ask yourself, “What can I eliminate today that is a distraction in keeping me fro creating positive change in my life?” – Asking yourself this question will truly get you into the thought process of realizing what you are “settling” and “allowing” in your life that you do have the power to get rid of, that can be helping in keeping you from reaching success

5. Ask yourself, “What goal can I achieve today mentally and physically that will get me one step closer to my desires and dreams for my life and business? – Asking yourself this question is truly helping you to take action in making A STEP in the right direction. The reason you need this is because “faith without works is dead.” You can hope, pray, and manifest things to happen in your life, but you have to create an environment in your life, in your mind that will INVITE what you’re wanting into your life. “Out with the old and in with the new!”

Staying in comfort is a mindset. It’s the mindset that it’s been a habit day in and day out that has worked for you, that has created some form of success or stability that it’s enough (20%) to keep you running, but barely running because your happiness, your productivity, your emotions are barely at where they should be!

We only live one life and it’s your choice to live it empowered and successful or live it in the “settle land.”

The choice is yours! What’re you going to choose for yourself TODAY?

Stress Management Tips in Depth

Depending on who you are, stress can affect you in a different way. It can have an effect mentally or emotionally where it adds tension and strain no your everyday life. A lot of times we “excuse” stress for being an everyday part of our lives and that is definitely a bad sign. A bad sign that we aren’t taking the time to truly invest in ourselves and balancing our lives!

As a personal empowerment coach and a mental health professional, I realize that many women feel they don’t have the “time” to manage stress, thus letting stress take over their lives completely!

What I am going to provide in this blog is 5 awesome ways that you can manage stress to increase productivity in your life and balance your mental and emotional wellness!

1. Change Toxic Thought Patterns– Attitudes such as, “I must be competent and a high achiever in every situation,” are unrealistic. Sometimes people do not have conscious thoughts like this, but upon examination of behavior and attitude, find that they are holding themselves to a standard of absolute perfection. If these standards are not met, they feel like failures – thy often grade themselves as 100% or “F.” To change toxic thought patterns, work on focusing on what you can control, not what’s out of your control.

2. Accept and meet physical and psychological needs for exercise, rest, good nutrition, and recreation- Practice self-care techniques and attempt to nurture and nourish your body as well as your mind. Know your own physical limits and requirements and make them a priority. Be realistic on how to accomplish your goals.

3. Develop a sense of self-worth that is not primarily dependent upon success, achievements, or the opinions of others- There are two elements to our self-worth; an unconditional “no matter what” elements, and a conditional “I must prove my self-worth by accomplishments and approval” element. Self-esteem too often is based on conditions that require the opinions and approval of others or your own high deals. Wanting others to approve you is not unhealthy, but too much emphasis is placed on this.

4. Accept imperfection, failures, and mistakes in self and others without excessive anxiety- A healthy sense of self-worth helps balance inner critical voices. When there is an internal balance between self-worth and criticism, one often regards outside disapproval as learning opportunities and a healthy challenge, despite the unpleasantness. One does not need to take a defensive posture, which is characterized by denying and attacking.

5. Develop good, warm, supportive relationships- Establishing good relationships with people – family, friends, co-workers, neighbors – can reduce stress immensely. Anyone who wants to develop a deep, mutually supportive relationship must take time to work on it, developing empathy, using self-disclosure to show the person “inside,” expressing and dealing with feelings and emotions, making a commitment to another person.


If you are wanting to work more on developing great stress management habits, please set up a consultation with me!


Managing Stress

Managing stress is all about taking charge: taking charge of your thoughts, your emotions, your schedule, your environment, and the way you deal with problems. The ultimate goal is a balanced life, with time for work, relationships, relaxation, and fun – plus the resilience to hold up under pressure and meet challenges head on.

Stress management starts with identifying the sources of stress in your life. This isn’t as easy as it sounds. Your true sources of stress aren’t always obvious, and it’s all too easy to overlook your own stress-inducing thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. Sure, you may know that you’re constantly worried about school deadlines. But maybe it’s your procrastination, rather than the actual assignment demands, that leads to deadline stress.

To identify your true sources of stress, look closely at your habits, attitude, and excuses:
Until you accept responsibility for the role you play in creating or maintaining it, your stress level will remain outside your control.

1. Create a Serenity Prayer

AABCs of Stress Management.

ALTER: Problem-solving direct communication, organizing, planning, time management, building up resistance, setting goals, changing your perceptions.
AVOID: Walk away, let go, learn to say “no,” delegate, set limits
ACCEPT: Let go of what you cannot change or control.

When creating your own Serenity Prayer ask yourself, “What situations would I like to alter?” “What situations can I avoid?” “What situations do I need to accept?”

A Serenity Prayer is similar to the one and only Serenity Prayer that we know, “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

2. Start a stress journal

A stress journal can help you identify the regular stressors in your life and the way you deal with them. Each time you feel stressed; keep track of it in your journal. As you keep a daily log, you will begin to see patterns and common themes.
Write down:

- What caused your stress (make a guess if you’re unsure).
- How you felt, both physically and emotionally.
- How you acted in response.
- What you did to make yourself feel better.

3. Avoid unnecessary stress

Not all stress can be avoided, and it’s not healthy to avoid a situation that needs to be addressed. You may be surprised, however, by the number of stressors in your life that you can eliminate.

Learn how to say “no” – Know your limits and stick to them. Whether in your personal or professional life, refuse to accept added responsibilities when you’re close to reaching them. Taking on more than you can handle is a guaranteed recipe for stress.

Avoid people who stress you out – If someone consistently causes stress in your life and you can’t turn the relationship around, limit the amount of time you spend with that person or end the relationship entirely.

 Take control of your environment – If a particular TV show makes you anxious, turn the TV off. If traffic’s got you tense, take a longer but less-traveled route.

 Avoid hot-button topics – If you get upset over religion or politics, cross them off your conversation list. If you repeatedly argue about the same subject with the same people, stop bringing it up or excuse yourself when it’s the topic of discussion.

Narrow down your to-do list – Analyze your schedule, responsibilities, and daily tasks. If you’ve got too much on your plate, distinguish between the “shoulds” and the “musts.” Drop tasks that aren’t truly necessary to the bottom of the list or eliminate them entirely.

4. Accept the things you can’t change

Some sources of stress are unavoidable. You can’t prevent or change stressors such as the death of a loved one, a serious illness, or a national recession. In such cases, the best way to cope with stress is to accept things as they are. Acceptance may be difficult, but in the long run, it’s easier than railing against a situation you can’t change.

Don’t try to control the uncontrollable. Many things in life are beyond our control— particularly the behavior of other people. Rather than stressing out over them, focus on the things you can control such as the way you choose to react to problems.

Look for the upside. As the saying goes, “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.” When facing major challenges, try to look at them as opportunities for personal growth. If your own poor choices contributed to a stressful situation, reflect on them and learn from your mistakes.

Share your feelings. Talk to a trusted friend or make an appointment with a therapist. Expressing what you’re going through can be very cathartic, even if there’s nothing you can do to change the stressful situation.

Learn to forgive. Accept the fact that we live in an imperfect world and that people make mistakes. Let go of anger and resentments. Free yourself from negative energy by forgiving and moving on.

5. Make time for fun and relaxation

By having a take-charge approach and a positive attitude, you can reduce stress in your life by nurturing yourself. If you regularly make time for fun and relaxation, you’ll be in a better place to handle life’s stressors when they inevitably come.

Healthy ways to relax and recharge
 Go for a walk. 
 Spend time in nature. 
 Call a good friend. 
 Sweat out tension with a good workout. 
 Write in your journal. 
 Take a long bath. 
 Light scented candles 
Savor a warm cup of coffee or tea. Play with a pet.
Work in your garden.
Get a massage.
Curl up with a good book. Listen to music.
Watch a comedy

Don’t get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of life that you forget to take care of your own needs. Nurturing yourself is a necessity, not a luxury.

 Set aside relaxation time. Include rest and relaxation in your daily schedule. Don’t allow other obligations to interfere. This is your time to take a break from all responsibilities and recharge your batteries.

 Connect with others. Spend time with positive people who enhance your life. A strong support system will buffer you from the negative effects of stress.

 Do something you enjoy every day. Make time for leisure activities that bring you joy, whether it be reading, playing with your pet, or working on your bike.

 Keep your sense of humor. This includes the ability to laugh at yourself. The act of laughing helps your body fight stress in a number of ways.

Learn the relaxation response

You can control your stress levels with relaxation techniques that evoke the body’s relaxation response, a state of restfulness that is the opposite of the stress response. Regularly practicing these techniques will build your physical and emotional resilience, heal your body, and boost your overall feelings of joy and calmness.