In current society, there are many pressures which face us all on an individual basis.
These can be various, but often include family life, relationships, financial pressures, pressures at work and health, to name but a few.
In terms of mental health, I believe we all have a certain resilience to coping with the daily stressors of life that we face on a day to day basis.
There are certain psychological and biological models which may predetermine some us to mental health problems, more than others when our own resilience and inner strength is stretched to it’s limits.
I am rather a believer in a model attributed to a stress vulnerability model, in that when faced with multiple stressors at one time , we can feel more fragile as human beings than when only coping with just a few minor stressors not on a large scale.
This is difficult to quantify or measure, because how one person copes with stress, may be totally different to how another copes with stress.
The most important factor, is being self aware enough to recognise when we are not coping with everyday situations around us , being aware of our own mental health and coping strategies most useful in dealing with these situations.
It is well known that there is a significant rise in behaviours such as binge drinking and self harming behaviours, particularly in younger people but also binge drinking appears to be most significant amongst a larger more diverse population.
I personally feel, binge drinking is a coping strategy used as an attempt to bury or hide away from the stressors of life we face, escapism, once again as addressed in previous posts.
This may appear ‘helpful’ on a short term basis, but in the long term can have extremely destructive and devastating consequences to relationships, employment, magnifying the pre existing stressors to a significant level.
There are effective coping strategies and I am hoping to add a personal subjective element today to highlight the beauty in the most natural aspects of life.
Currently, I am learning to embrace nature in my life and new experiences. In nature, I have learnt to grasp the concept of inner peace.
Very recently I drove up to the north western coast of Scotland, called Ullapool.
This is the most stunning place I think I have ever discovered in my life.
Arriving at this place, was like stepping away from the pressures of the inside world, to the most tranquil destination on earth.
As I the sunset, I stood on a delicately pebbled bay, watching the gentle crest of the waves roll in , the clear , still sea and embracing the gentle breeze that softly abounded with each wave, in that moment, I was filled with deep peace and an amazing sense that reinvigorated my spirits and captivated me with the awe of such a beautiful, tranquil special place. Deep profound happiness filled my heart and spirit because I felt so close to this beauty and so grateful that it surrounded me. Being so close to something so special, as I watched the sun descend over the stark wildness but amazing scenery and the lighthouse in the distance, I embraced a moment of happiness I have chased after for years and in that moment, I found it, like the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. No amount of money could buy me that and nobody could give me it.
There is so much more beyond what we see and what we already think we know as we chase after what we believe makes us successful or happy. Happiness is found in the most beautiful and simplest and precious of things that already exist but they just await to be found if we search long enough and hard enough we will find the road to the peace we search for.
That night , I stood by my bedroom window, watching the bright moonlight beaming over the glassy ripples of the loch below and there I felt more freedom and escape, in this , than any other form of escapism that had been available to me in my life.
There is so much beauty and peace to embrace in our life, if we just take a step back and ask ourselves, what really matters and what is most important?
I learnt that life doesnt have to be overwhelming or challenging, it can be very simple, the greatest gift I have found is in prayer and letting go of things I cannot control and then I always find my answers. The answers don’t often lie externally. They lie internally and as I embrace each new day and move forward, as we as people overcome every battle faced with instead of succumbing to the easy option or choice we find we become stronger and learn to develop a new shell , a new character that creates a beautiful new beginning and a beautiful new chapter in our lives and suddenly we are grateful for the pain that we ever faced, because without it we would not have found such beauty in the journey we faced along the way.