Brief outline of my mental health journey…

Hi all. And welcome to my blog. I am here starting this blog for the first time.

I want to make this blog about the experiences of mental health and the journey that the majority of people with mental health face.

I want to be able to share those experiences of mental health and not make negativity my main subject of focus. I want to be able to embrace the whole idea of mental health and that it is okay to discuss it openly..

But before I make any more blog posts about the present and future, let me explain to you my journey to today. The present day.

My mental health journey began officially when I was thirteen/fourteen. But I never really properly knew until I was sixteen. Ever since I’ve lived with mental health issues. The specific mental health issues I am and have always lived with are: social anxiety, general anxiety disorder and depression.

And fast forward to today, here I am, still alive and well. Nice and healthy attending my studies.

So that’s my journey so far until today and a brief look into my past.

Thank you for reading.

I hope you all will find my posts interesting, and will happily read them all, including this one. And feel free to comment your thoughts and opinions.

Why students should have mental health days

Hi guys and welcome back to another post.

I want to discuss or more like write about why students should have mental health days and why it’s important for that to happen.

A lot of teens experience mental health but it is never spoken about at all. And this counts for all over the world. And when I say a lot it’s a lot, we have a lot of teens in this world.

Did you know that at least ‘Half of all mental health conditions start by 14 years of age but most cases are undetected and untreated’ or that ‘Suicide is the third leading cause of death in 15-19-year-olds’? (world health organisation).

And I ask if only every country followed suit with some states in the USA, we would have a safer place for teenagers and students to live in. (https://www.ted.com/talks/hailey_hardcastle_why_students_should_have_mental_health_days?language=en)

Teenagers would feel better taken care of and if we acknowledge that they exist in this world and that their mental health issues exist in this world, we would have less suicides. Those statistic numbers would be less or even wouldn’t exist if all other countries followed suit. If only we were able to have a law passed in every other country or region that would allow students to take mental health days off without judgement then this world would be just a little safer and better for all our world’s teens to live in.

So what can we do about it you ask?

Well I can say that you can start by:

  • Doing your research
  • Get the facts
  • Set up an initiative or volunteer support group (online, over the phone or in person) – (no matter how big or small)
  • Educators be there for the students, ask how they are doing everyday. Ask about their wellbeing. Sometimes just a simple ‘how are you?’ Or a simple ‘hi, what can I do to help?’ Could save a teen’s life
  • if you want to do something huge, set up an online/in-person petition for the community to sign to take to parliament. In England we need 100,000 signatures to take any petition to parliament.,
  • Another way to do something huge, set up a protest or lobby outside buildings that can affect the lives of the public.
  • Set up counselling services at schools. For the students by the students kind of counselling (if professionals are out of the question). Or ask the community members to volunteer to be sit in counsellors.
  • Educators, you can host workshops to bring awareness of mental health at schools and to provide an open space for students to express themselves, where they are allowed to be their true authentic selves.

Regardless of how small or big, it’s the good deed that always counts. Making sure that teenagers today are helped is what is the most important right now. To let them know that there are other options out there for them besides suicide. To let them know that there are people here to help them. Before it’s too late.

I am very passionate about mental health and it is not just important for adults but it is for the teenagers of this world too. So don’t leave them out, they’re human being too. We should all be in this together.

Thank you for reading 🧡

How anxiety affects the body

Hi guys and welcome back to another blog post.

I want to dedicate this post to how anxiety can affect an individual’s physical health. Most of the changes that happen when it comes to anxiety are behavioural changes but there are also some physical aspects that need to be considered as well.

For every person who experiences an anxiety disorder like myself, we all have different symptoms. Mostly behavioural but this time in this post we are discussing physical. So as an example, I can tell you that for me personally, I experience physical affects such as fatigue, concentration difficulty (hence my short attention span) and headaches/increased breathing & heart rate.

Like I said that is just an example of what someone with an anxiety disorder of some form may go through on a regular basis. symptoms vary from person to person in terms of personal experiences. But generally, there are a few general common symptoms that can show up in most people’s experiences which I’ll try to explain in the next few paragraphs or in bullet points.

A few symptoms that can occur are:

  • Increased breathing/heart rate
  • Fatigue
  • Low concentration levels
  • Headaches/migraines
  • Feeling lightheaded
  • Feeling nauseous
  • Excessive worrying

Some of these may sound familiar to those of you who experience a form of an anxiety disorder. But to those of you who don’t know, these are just some of the physical symptoms an individual with anxiety can go through regularly.

Long term anxiety and stress can make your brain release stress hormones. This can cause headaches, dizziness and depression.

When you feel an adrenaline rush that has a lot to do with your brain sending signals to the nervous system. So the brain is sending a signal to the nervous system of how would you respond to a threat, would you take flight or stay and fight? And during this moment is when most of the physical symptoms come alive and it is quite difficult to focus on anything else but that threat.

This is helpful when you experience high stress events occasionally but it is not good for your health long term to be exposed to this high level of stress.

I hope this post was helpful and informative. Let me know if I’ve missed anything out. But I hope this just about covered the topic.

If you have more useful info please leave in the comments for others to read, thank you.

Thank you for reading. Much love. 🧡

Mental health in the workplace

Hey guys and welcome to another blog post!!

I want to write about normalising mental health within any workplace and being able to feel comfortable to take a day off from work because of your mental health.

There are many work related factors that can be a risk to an employees mental health. A few can include:

  • Insufficient health and safety policies
  • Poor communication and management practices
  • Low levels of support for employees
  • Inflexible working hours
  • Unclear tasks and objectives

This can all be avoided if a healthy workplace is created and making sure that the employees that work for you enjoy what they do and take pleasure in working for you.

Creating a healthy workplace for your employees is what matters most. And making sure as employees that we feel safe to work in an environment that is not negative fuelled is important to us all.

And to follow suit with a negative and drama free workplace, there are a few ways of how you can introduce a healthy intervention for those that work for you.

For example:

  • Protect the mental health of your employees by reducing work related risk factors
  • Promote mental health by improving positive aspects of work and the strengths of your employees
  • Address mental health problems regardless of the cause

It is vital that every employer has an awareness of their workplace environment and how they can improve and make changes in a healthy and positive way to better promote the mental health of all employees. They can do this by being understanding of the opportunities and needs in individual employees to change and make adaptations to better policies for mental health in the workplace.

This way your employees feel safe and secure as well as being able to work freely whilst meeting objectives and tasks.

Having an understanding boss is also key to better encourage employees to be more open about taking days off if they are unable to attend work due to their mental health.

A happy workplace, means happy employees. An understanding boss, means peace between employees and boss. So make sure as an employer, you are able to cater to all individuals who work for you and it is critical (can’t stress this enough) to educate yourself on the importance of understanding mental health and illnesses.

Thank you for reading. 🧡

How to spot the tell tale signs of anxiety

Hi guys and welcome back to another blog post.

I want to dedicate this post to how to spot the tell tale signs of anxiety.

Anxiety can be a little difficult to differentiate when it comes to any kind of situation. There is a different between normal worrying about day to day tasks and excessive worrying which takes things to the extreme limit/end of things that makes it a little more challenging for an individual with an anxiety disorder to overcome daily tasks (and is also a symptom of anxiety).

There are daily things that can cause stress and anxiety that we worry about such as work, deadlines, uni, school and family issues. And these things are normal to worry about and stress over. We all go through one thing or the other on a daily basis and it’s okay to not be okay. It’s how we react to those situations that makes the difference between an individual who isn’t experiencing an anxiety disorder and someone who is.

So how can you tell the difference? Well here are a few differences.

Someone with an anxiety disorder :

  • Intense anxiety attacks due to being around other people
  • Communication problems
  • Self consciousness of others and constant worrying of feeling embarrassed and/or humiliated
  • Constant worrying of others hating you or judging you
  • Difficulty forming/keeping friendships
  • Avoiding places where people congregate

Someone without an anxiety disorder:

  • Can form long lasting relationships and friendships with others
  • Have a steady social life
  • Are able to communicate well
  • Worry less over others being judgemental
  • Have less thoughts about others being around them
  • Are comfortable being in social settings

There are several reasons as to why someone may have an anxiety disorder and that could include several factors. Such as childhood shyness, exposure to stressful life events, lack of economic resources/wealth, history of anxiety disorders in the family, being widowed or divorced.

Having an anxiety disorder is something that should be taken more seriously. More people should be educated on anxiety and the different types of anxiety disorders there are out there. I have made a post or two about some of these a while ago, like a long a while ago. But I’m sure if you scroll through downwards, you’ll find it somewhere.

But my point is, to those that don’t know, it is their responsibility to seek out the knowledge. And to those who fight and advocate for mental health and mental illness like myself, it is our responsibility to provide the education where others who don’t know can seek that knowledge.

We are all in this together. We need to educate others and educate ourselves. And be less prejudice. We are all one race and that is the human race. It doesn’t matter about skin colour, ethnicity, ethnic background, gender or geographical location. Anyone can experience an anxiety disorder and be diagnosed with it.

We need to fight to get rid of the taboos surrounding mental illness and be there for one another.

Thank you for reading, much love. 🧡

Post lockdown anxiety

Hi guys

I know it’s been a long few months since I have been away. This is the longest I have been gone from blogging but I am back with a new post and a new energy!!! I am feeling more positive and happy!! I hope you all have a good day/evening wherever you are in the world.

So since three months ago we have all been in lockdown. Some longer than others but we are all in the same boat. Those who have existing mental health issues and mental illness are adjusting to these changes. As well as those who are able to function day to day are now also worrying and stressing during this time.

For me personally, it was a little hard to get used to in the beginning. I was scared and anxious. Worried to say the least. And I am sure most, if not all of you felt the same way.

Now a few months into lockdown we are all getting used to this lockdown and weirdly it has become our new normal. Those who work, are working from home except the essential workers who are needed in places such as hospitals and supermarkets. Kudos to the NHS back home who are doing an amazing job and they always have been since the beginning of time!!

But even though we are used to the lockdown and staying indoors all the time, that doesn’t mean our mental health issues and our mental illnesses stop. We are all still fighting our own mental battles everyday to stay alive and strong. To make sure we are kicking and fighting throughout till the end.

It is difficult to comprehend that staying indoors 24/7 is going to be easy. No one said it will be a breeze through the wind. There will be times that will test us and there will be times where we feel sad and we are in a low mood or just having a bad day. Just because we are in lockdown due to a pandemic, it doesn’t make our lives different in terms of our mental health.

It is completely normal to have worries about the lockdown and when it will be lifted. That is okay. Embrace your worrying, embrace your anxiousness. It is okay to not be okay. And there will be times that you will not want to be here. But there are people out there who are going through the same thing. For once you can say that you are not going through this alone because you literally are not.

So my best advice would be is to make use of video calling friends and family. Stay in contact with loved ones, tell them you love them. Friends are also important during this time of uncertainty. Some may not have families to turn to, so it is vital you have someone you can talk to. Even if it is one friend or ten friends. It doesn’t matter.

All that matters is that you have someone you can lean on and vice versa.

I have been going through a lot during post lockdown in the beginning and my anxiety was bad for the first month. I can admit to that. I just want to let you know whoever is reading this, you are not alone. I am here with you, we are in this together.

My second best advice to help you get through this is to keep yourself busy. If you’re working from home, that is great. I’d you have online classes with uni or college, that’s good. but if not, here are some ways to keep busy during this time:

– Take an online course: I recommend http://www.coursera.org for any course from top universities all over the world. A certificate will be awarded at the end of the course for $49. It’s a really good site for online courses for busy mums, dads and young people who want to stay busy.

– Host game/quiz nights with the family and friends

– Play online games with friends and pals you can’t reach in person

– Volunteer for a charity or cause. During this pandemic we’ve already seen a lot of helping hands, maybe you can join your local community programme to help others in your area

– Raise money for charity by hosting game nights, quiz nights or playing online games to win

– Donate food to neighbours who are in need

– Use this time to improve a skill that you started but haven’t used in a while like baking or sewing

– Try out news food recipes

I hope these tips are helpful and are of good use to you all!! I hope you all are doing well and are staying safe.

Feel free to direct message me on Twitter at faizablogsuk if you need a buddy to talk to.

Thank You for reading!! Stay safe and stay indoors!! 🧡

self isolation

Hi guys and welcome to another blog post.

I want to talk about the bad time we are going through in every part of the world. The corona virus has managed to lock us in our homes and only for us to come out for essentials such as grocery shopping and work for those who have jobs in supermarkets, hospitals and pharmacies (most work from home now such as teachers and other government workers and employees). During this bad time I have managed to pick up some good habits that I never would have picked up if it was not for this time. I have seen many others on social media doing a lot of good things during this time and I thought, ‘ If I am seeing people working out, going on walks, cooking and spending time with the family: then all is not lost’.

So I decided to give some of these habits a go which I think could help you pass the time during self isolation:

  • Cooking
  • Reading my holy book (Quran)
  • Keeping up with my daily prayers
  • Practising self care
  • Testing out different hair oils and skin care products
  • Vlogging (could be done on snapchat or instagram, not just YouTube)

I have been doing all of these things on a daily basis since I’ve been in self isolation for two weeks and a half. Besides the times I go out to the shops, supermarket and my driving classes.

Since doing all of this, I have managed to get some sort of a routine in place, doing things at a certain time everyday. And in a way it has helped get some sort of structure into place and I feel more organised. And in a way I feel that I am more calm when I have structure and I have been feeling more calm lately.

I have my days where I am anxious and nervous and all over the place with my emotions. But I am getting better at controlling my negative emotions but I could do even better.

Self isolation is really hard especially when you are forced to and when you cannot see family members or friends. This virus is spreading and I do encourage for everyone to stay safe and practice social distancing wheneve Rubin errands outside.

Do keep an eye out for any symptoms you may experience. Quarantine yourself if you do have symptoms and make sure to call a doctor on call at your local doctor’s surgery.

Make sure you do not visit anyone during this time and stay only with the people you live with in your OWN HOME!! DO NOT INVITE PEOPLE OVER!! I cannot stress that enough.

Stay safe and be careful.

Thank you for reading!! love you guys as always!! Xx

Life and mental health update

Hey guys

So, it has been a while since I last wrote anything and that is because a) I have nothing to write about, b) I have been taking more time for myself and my mental health lately and c) the current situation got me scared a little bit. I know the last reason doesn’t really affect me writing anything since I am indoors typing on a computer. But for me this is a legit reason and my fear of this virus going around got me shook up a little bit too much to the point where I could not write anything. So please do not judge me for it.

The past two months, I have been in the UAE, away from London and it’s horrific politics & news. And I am not looking to come back anytime soon for several reasons, some more personal than others.

I have struggled a little bit adjusting to life here simply because I miss home and I have been struggling with my mental health a little bit prior to coming here. And I have managed to carry my problems over with me somehow. I am doing a little better but I still struggle with my anxiety and general well being every other day/week or so. So it is a bit up and down for me.

I have my bad days and my good days. More bad than good but good also. I have had a lot of good things happen to me since being here that I never thought would happen if I was to stay in London. And if it was not for my decision to move, I would have stayed struggling the way I was and nothing would have improved for me there.

Since being here in the Middle East, my life has improved. I am a lot happier but I cannot say if I am doing a lot better since it is too early and too soon to say. So I am going to hold off from saying that for the time being. But I do feel a lot happier being here. Sometimes a change in environment does good to someone’s mental state and wellbeing. And it has done me good in a lot of ways more than I can imagine. Yet, I still have to keep in mind that my bad days wot ever go away and that I could slip back at any time and at any moment.

But for now, I am doing okay and I feel just fine. I am trying to find ways to cope whilst self isolating and practising social distancing due to the current situation.

Thank you guys for always being here and reading my bullshit and for putting up with it. You didn’t have to and you never have to in the near future. So thank you all for just sticking with me since the beginning. It makes me happy to know that i still have an audience to write to even if i still take a break for whatever reason.

Thank you for everything, you guys mean a lot to me.