Have you ever considered going to therapy, but were too afraid that it wouldn’t work? Have you felt nervous about what other people would think of you if you went? Do you or your loved ones have any reservations about therapy?
Unfortunately, mental health issues have been steadily increasing over the years. With COVID-19 especially, more people have decided to seek treatment through therapy. While mental health awareness has progressed, there remains a stigma behind receiving therapy. Whether to do with its supposed ineffectiveness or the weakness it represents.
The rest of this article will uncover some of the therapy stigmas, and how to overcome them.
Stigma around mental illness in general
Thankfully, mental health awareness has become much better over the past few years. But there are certain stigmas still associated with those suffering from mental health issues.
For example, it’s been thought that those suffering from depression or anxiety are more fragile or sensitive. They have also been thought of as attention-seeking, weak, or maybe even a handful to deal with.
There are also those that misunderstand mental health issues for emotions. For example, many people assume that depression is just sadness, or anxiety is just nerves. They may assume that it’s something to “just get over” within a day or two.
People looking in from the outside often think that it’s just a matter of seeing the glass half full. Sadly, they don’t know or take into account many of the reasons that can contribute to mental health issues. Whether it’s hormones and brain chemistry, or the way we were brought up or past experiences, that can alter the way we think. For PTSD-sufferers especially, past traumas can significantly affect the way your brain thinks.
Unfortunately, mental health issues are more complex and long-term than feeling sad or overthinking for one day. This is why it’s important we break down the mental illness stigma.
How to overcome mental illness stigma
We cannot control what people think or respond to certain things at the end of the day. But there are still things you can do to take care of yourself! Here are some solutions to mental illness stigma.
- Go to therapy
- Block out the negativity
- Do things that make you happy
- Learn to prioritise yourself
- Surround yourself with supportive people
- Educate yourself on mental health issues (i.e. reading books or listening to podcasts)
- Meet people or join support groups
Unfortunately, therapy stigma and mental illness stigma exists. However, there are still things that you can do to take care of yourself. Whether that’s going to therapy or instilling certain daily practices, like learning how to set boundaries!
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