Mental Illness & Its Sidekick: Social Media

I hope that few or even none will ask for the password to the previous post in which I wrote. It is full of hurt, frustration and ignorance. But to bring light to a negative situation, I wanted to share with you a quote that I came across a few days ago:

“I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be.” -Charles Dickens

To fill you in.. I have a hard time understanding and even believing that mental illnesses exist in the lives of many. Before you snap my head back, note what I said and I’ll reiterate it for those of you who didn’t catch it. I believe that mental illnesses exist. I believe that there are people in this world that suffer from an array of mental illnesses, of which, I pray and hope that they are able to obtain and receive the treatment and help that they need.

However, I don’t believe that everyone who claims to suffer from a mental illness does. And equally, I think there are people that have illnesses and out of denial, chose not to seek help.

But..

I’m so sick of people using various mental illnesses as excuses. As an excuse to stop something, to never complete tasks. An excuse to not work or function like a member of society. An excuse to give up. An excuse to hurt people and an excuse to be selfish. It’s sickening and I honestly think that it’s the reason I have an extreme lack of empathy for mental illness as whole. For those who (in my opinion) abuse the severity of mental illnesses.

Keep in mind that I do agree and believe that there are people who this affects greatly. People who literally cannot function appropriately. People who cannot overcome their illness even if they desired to.

But I do know people who can help themselves. People who Google search symptoms and self-diagnose. Anxiety, depression, bi-polar; those of you who do not suffer from it in a mentally debilitating way, stop for the love of everything holy, using it as an excuse. You’re not helping yourself or society. Just because you had a bad day or a bad week does not mean you are mentally sick.

If you seriously do suffer from a mental illness and can get help, get fucking help. If you are given options to stop hurting yourself and those around you, fucking get help. Stop being selfish, stop looking for pity, stop making excuses. Get. Help.


And this brings me back to my original quote. Although I don’t understand and may never, I do want to applaud the family members of those who are consistently being there for their loved ones with mental illnesses. Without you, those suffering may have no one in their corner. If you haven’t already, and even if you have, please never ever stop encouraging them to get help for themselves and for those around them.

“I loved her against reason, against promise, against peace, against hope, against happiness, against all discouragement that could be.” -Charles Dickens

After reading what I wrote, some of it might contradict itself but it’s still worth sharing.  This post isn’t about those truly suffering from a mental illness. The only reason I brought this to light is because I recently witnessed a mental illness “down” and it gave me a new perspective. I viewed someone I’ve watched grow up my whole life, totally differently and it made me question everything I did and didn’t know about mental illnesses.

This post is about those that “brag” on social media that they can’t do this and can’t do that because of anxiety. Those that look for pity and claim to suffer from major depression because their car died on the side of the road. Those that give mental illness a bad name and take away from the severity of what is really on the table.

Selfie Or Helpie?

I’ve noticed a phenomenon on Facebook feeds around the area. This has been happening for about a year now but more recently more and more people have followed suit. The topic at hand here – is pre and post workout pictures being blasted all over social media.

I feel indifferent about this. On one hand, I get it. So many “inspirational leaders” are showing off their goods because they want you to jump on the bandwagon. To get healthy and fit. They are proud of themselves and are bound and determined to show you, your mother, brother, teacher, and co-workers that they can do the same.

I’m new to the workout and eating right world. And when I say new, I mean old. I’ve been trying to get into the swing of things since I was in 4th grade when I was put on my first “diet.” However, over the last 7 or so weeks, I started something new and I’m currently down 17.6 pounds and making progress. Go me!! But I’m nowhere near the “show my stomach on Facebook” progress though. That’ll never happen.

Getting a little side-tracked here. But I get it. I get that a good 10 of you on Facebook are Beachbody coaches. Your job is to help and encourage others to do the same as you, try as hard as you, look as good as you. It’s motivating. Sometimes.

But other times, it’s annoying. You’re flat stomach still looks the same as it looked yesterday and the day before. It even looks the same as the day you started. I don’t really think this has to do with “jealously” of the thin and famous. It’s more along the lines of wanting to see someone that has actually gone through a transformation struggle. Not someone that has always been an athlete, or slim built, or naturally born with metabolism.

Just an observation I guess. I do follow most of the people, not for the results but for the encouraging words. Most of them post a picture of their fabulous physique but they also talk about the struggle of making yourself workout and making yourself eat right and making yourself choose life rather than death.

I guess sometimes I just don’t know if they are actually “helping” people because they want to and that’s what drives them or if they are just excited to take a selfie and show off. Every. Single. Day. Considering that we live in a primarily narcissistic world, it’s hard to tell the difference.

We have a little thing going around work for the community to get to know us better because, after all, we are a newspaper. So, if we wanted we could fill out a short survey and submit a photo. Yesterday, my summary was featured. Give it a thumbs up and share if you’d like! Check it out here! #WeAreTheHerald

Sell The Sizzle, Not The Steak.

Lately I’ve been feeling conflicted when it comes to my blog and the guts of it. I find myself carefully constructing these posts only to either draft 50% of them or choose who I publicly share it with out of the fear of who is reading it. Quite frankly, I don’t care who reads it. I like the feedback whether positive or negative. I want strangers, friends, other bloggers, family, ect to hear what I have to say but than on the other side of equal balance and importance are my coworkers.

Although we’re all entitled to an opinion and I am very stubborn in that way of thinking; I don’t want to offend the wrong person. This, meaning someone I work with. I don’t want something that I say or believe to be taken the wrong way or even simply be wrong in their eyes and than I pay for it on the professional front even though this is my personal blog. But, given the world we live in; our personal space needs to abide by our professional lives rules and regulations.

I suppose I have a few options:
1. I can make my blog private but than what’s the point? I write because I want to be read.
2. Stop sharing my blog on Facebook. Currently, I will share it here and there but not always. And when I do, I usually share to everyone except specific people. You know what I mean? But that gets so annoying and Facebook is really the only place that I can share it to friends and family.
3. Make my Twitter private, thus eliminating any wandering eyes looking for some kind of twisted revenge.

All are just plain ol’ first world problematic pains in my butt. I haven’t decided yet what to do but what I know for sure is that I want to write whatever, however, and whenever I want without the fear of it interfering with my professional life. Now, I really haven’t done or said anything that would cause this kind of uproar but that’s what I’m trying to prevent because I know perfectly good, hardworking people that have gotten fired or been prevented from getting jobs due to something or another on social media. Where does that leave the blogger in all if us?

I guess the people that really make a dinosaurs footprint in the history of our world are the ones who don’t give a shit. That just roll with the punches, march to the beat of their own drum, ect. Thinking about this, the people that I look up to most are daring. They’ve been knocked down, rejected, and thrown shit-filled curve balls but they are the ones I admire.

So here’s to taking my own stand, pushing through the hurdles, proving people wrong and myself right. Sell the sizzle not the steak right?