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12 Signs Your Mental Health Needs Attention

Your body and mind may be yelling "Help!"

BY Naledi K

Apr 13, 2022, 11:06 AM

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There are plenty of songs about how it’s okay not to be okay and yet most Black women still don’t believe that. Women make time to evaluate everything and everyone to make sure that they are doing fine across all spheres of life from physical to emotional. Somehow, the are you okay checklist always manages to skip the people performing it on others and they never really ask themselves if they are doing okay… sometimes until it’s too late. However, there are always signs. Your body and mind tell you when it needs a little bit more TLC or just attention in general.

So perhaps our issues have nothing to do with awareness. A lot of us are aware of mental health and of the fact that it deserves a high space on our priority list. Miss SA 2020 Shudufhadzo Musida, who is an advocate for putting one's mental health first, said “I call the mind the powerhouse, the tool that can change lives and the narratives that exist in society.”

Shudu is absolutely right, if we don’t change our attitudes towards how big a role our mental health plays in our lives, families, communities and society at large, we will never live up to our fullest potential.
"The trick is to be in tune with yourself. The thing about mental health is that while it is common, it is also unique to each human being. If you don;t know how you function at your happiest or most healthy, then you won’t be able to pick up that you’ve started under-performing. This calls for intentional and serious introspection."
People always joke about how “ they used to be happy”. Not to be confused with sentiments we make when we miss our younger, stress-free days when we were kids. A person will realise that they are not as happy as they used to be. That they are slowly falling into a whole - mentally - that gets bigger and bigger and continues to isolate them so that it looks like there’s no helping hand insight.

The truth is, the people around you also notice these - sometimes small - changes as they happen. Sometimes they tell you and you dismiss it as a joke, sometimes you round it off to adulting, on some “I don’t visit my friends anymore because I’m always working” or “I haven't been home to see my extended family because of the pandemic”.
And you know what, your excuses could be true and are valid. However, it is really worth taking a deeper look and seeing if you're not dismissing signs that your mental health needs attention. 

Here Are The Signs To Look Out For:

  1. You avoid family and friends
  2. Your mood is mostly low
  3. You find it hard to make decisions
  4. You feel tearful most of the time
  5. You find it hard to remember things
  6. You feel an intense fear of weight gain/loss
  7. Your sleep routine is poor
  8. You feel overwhelmed by things
  9. You find it difficult to control your emotions
  10. You’re easily irritated and short-tempered
  11. You are finding it hard to get out of bed
  12. You are finding it hard to do most of the things you love doing

Remember, when in doubt, always consult a professional however these signs should shed a light. Do not take it lightly and be kind to yourself. Life can get overwhelming at times and it could be hard to cope. Just don't forget that it is okay to not be okay.