Throughout the world, mental health issues plague millions of individuals each year. They do not discriminate, and they often wreak havoc on the lives they are able to infiltrate. When you have a friend who struggles with anxiety, depression, or other diagnosed mental health disorder, you might be wondering how to help them without becoming a burden or nuisance. There are several things that you can do for the person you care about.
Learn About Mental Illness
One way to begin having a better understanding of your friend's current mental state or diagnosed condition is to spend time learning about mental illness, misconceptions, symptoms, treatments, and statistics relevant to individual disorders or ailments. For example, there are several triggers of depression that have nothing to do with being sad or lazy. Understanding the causes of mental disorders, such as anxiety, depression, or another diagnosed disorder, such as PTSD, bipolar disorder, or borderline personality disorder, can help you to learn more about how your friend feels and experiences the world on a daily basis.
Don't Diagnose Them
After you've done some reading about mental health, it can be tempting to try to diagnose your friend based on your observations of them. Resist that urge. Mental health issues are highly complex and require detailed evaluations and elimination of other possibilities by a trained professional. However, while it is important to respect your friend's privacy as well as the mental issues they are struggling with, it is also important to provide healthy tools and resources when they are warranted and welcomed by your friend.
Listen to Them
When discussing your friend's current mental state, their feelings, and the mental health issues they are struggling with, be an active listener at all times. Rather than simply waiting for your friend to finish what they are saying so that you can interject, offer advice, or provide resources, truly spend time learning how to become a better active listener. When your friend feels as if they are genuinely being listened to and heard, they are more likely to remain open and honest with you about their struggles, even if their struggles become dangerous or potentially life-threatening.
Rather than sharing your own experiences, moods, and even your own mental health issues or struggles as your friend is expressing themselves, be sure to remain as an active listener. Instead of sharing your experiences and taking away from your friend's moment to share their true thoughts and feelings, empathize with your friend, and continue to ask questions about their own personal mental health issues and the disorders they are struggling to overcome each day. Active listening is key to maintaining an open relationship with any friend, especially one who is currently struggling mentally and emotionally.
Don't Be Overbearing
Avoid being overbearing when discussing mental health issues and disorders with your friends, especially if they have asked you not to bring up specific topics or subjects. Rather than provoking your friend by discussing issues that are difficult for them, simply inform them that you will be available when they are ready to discuss anything that is troubling them in their lives.
Ask if You Can Help
Once you have assured your friend that you are willing to be understanding and supportive of them, ask them directly if there is anything you can do to help. Avoid being pushy or persistent, and simply inform them that they do not need to answer you immediately, but that you are available to help them anytime they feel that they are in need.
Remain Understanding of Limitations and Lifestyle Changes
Understand that mental illness significantly impacts lifestyle, and it can cause your friend to feel sad, depressed, lonely, despondent, and even anti-social or isolated and alone. It is important to note that these changes are typically linked with brain chemistry changes and should not be taken personally or as a slight against you as their friend. Familiarizing yourself with the mental illness or mental health struggle that your friend is battling can help you to better understand their habits, lifestyle changes, and any behaviors that may otherwise be atypical or out of the ordinary for them.
Know Your Own Personal Limits
In life, people tend to strive to help those they love, including both blood relatives and friends they have met throughout their journey. However, it is important to understand your own personal limits when it comes to assisting your friend with their issues or going too far and neglecting yourself and your own life.
If a friend is unwilling to work on seeking help or is unable to do so on their own, it is important to provide insight, opinions, and resources whenever they are welcomed and when your friend is opening to listening. It is also important to never neglect yourself and your own needs as well as your everyday responsibilities. In order for you to truly be able to provide the love, care, and support necessary for your friend, you must first ensure that your own daily life is in proper order.
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Amy Blankson is the CEO of Fearless Positivity and author of The Future of Happiness. She believes that “no matter where your baseline for happiness is today, you can always increase your overall happiness level.” In this article, Blankson offers some insight into simple ways you can inject positivity into your day.
(BPT) - Work demands paired with family demands make modern life extremely busy. Meetings, deadlines, housework, kids' homework, practice and much more all vie for your time. What's the secret to keeping on top of it all? Research shows the power of positivity can work wonders in managing stress, staying productive and boosting happiness.
Four out of five people agree positive thinking can help improve their lives and start the morning off on a positive note, according to a recent survey of American workers to gain insight into the impact of positivity in the workplace conducted by The Original Donut Shop Coffee. The good news is that a resounding 88% of Americans consider themselves positive people, but they think there is room for improvement. In fact, 69% wish they could be even more positive!
“Positive individuals are three times more creative, 31% more productive, and 23% less fatigued,” says Amy Blankson, CEO of Fearless Positivity and author of “The Future of Happiness.” “No matter where your baseline for happiness is today, you can always increase your overall happiness level.”
Blankson offers some insight into simple ways you can inject positivity into your day:
Set intentions early
Take a moment to shift your focus in the morning. What do you want to get out of your day? It’s so easy to fall prey to the tyranny of urgency. Hold the emails, texts, calls and messages and spend just 2 minutes grounding yourself in a positive practice like meditating or journaling. You'll set yourself up for greater happiness in the long run.
If you feel like you don't have the time or discipline to keep a gratitude journal, try looking for a "gratitude trigger." For instance, every time you stop at a red light, say one thing you are grateful for. This habit is great to pass time on commutes and is also a good practice to share with your children when they are in the car with you.
Think to the future
Try saying "future-forward gratitudes" in the morning. These are the things you are excited about for the day ahead, such as a meeting, lunch or special project. This practice helps prime you for positivity during the day and gives you an anchor point for reflection at the end of the day.
While more people are working from home, 45% of them consider themselves a positive person versus 75% of people who work in the office, according to the survey. One way to stay connected and spread positivity with coworkers when you’re not in the office is by taking a few minutes each day to text, email or call a coworker to thank them for something they did.
Move beyond off days
Don't get hung up when you have a negative day. The most important part of creating a new habit is having the courage to restart when you have an off day. Happiness is not a state of mind; it's a mindset that develops over time. The best way to elevate your mindset is by training your brain to look for positive information in the world around you that you might have missed.
Pay it forward
Individuals who pay it forward through praise and recognition express that they have greater feelings of happiness, satisfaction and relatedness. However, even more importantly, both givers and receivers inspire others to want to give, which creates a powerful network effect.
Nearly seven in 10 people agree they have a co-worker that is very positive and helps them get through the workday, and almost 75% said they often receive appreciation from their coworkers, according to the survey. If you have someone who is always brightening your day, you can show gratitude by nominating them for a chance to win some great prizes.
Here's what you need to do: Fans can visit brewpositivity.com between Oct. 28 and Nov. 22 to nominate a colleague for a chance to have their positivity rewarded. Twenty-five individuals will have a chance to win $200 and a one-year supply of The Original Donut Shop Coffee. For the kind nomination, the nominator will also have a chance to receive a one-year supply of The Original Donut Shop Coffee!
When each day feels full to the brim, follow these five easy tips to maximize each hour and make the most of each day, be more productive, accomplish your goals and still have time to spare - and less stress.
(BPT) - When the calendar flips to a new year, many people are inspired to make resolutions, promising productivity, healthy lifestyles, self-care and more. But all New Year’s goals require making time for what you set out to do — and a little planning goes a long way.
No matter your resolutions, here are easy tips to make the most of each day, accomplish your goals and still have time to spare:
Get ready the night before
Make your morning routine easier by getting organized the night before. Prepare your breakfast and coffee. Choose your outfit and set it by your bed. Pack your bag and place it by the door so you’re ready to go. Let your nighttime energy fuel you in the morning.
Spend less time on chores
Household chores are time consuming and, let’s face it, not many people look forward to cleaning and laundry. Invest in ways to lighten your load, like the LG TurboWash 360, which has features that help you get more chores done in less time. It can tackle family-sized loads in less than 30 minutes without sacrificing performance, so your clothes don’t pile up. Shorter wash times and energy-saving capabilities save you both time and money.
Stick to a sleep schedule
The first step in reaching your goals is making sure you’re in good health. One of the most important, and difficult, aspects of good health is sleep. You’ll feel more refreshed and ready to take on the day if you establish a solid sleep schedule and stick to it. To set your schedule, pick the time you want to wake up every day and count back seven to eight hours — that’s your new bedtime.
Get a good calendar
Maximize your time by having a plan for each week. Whether you use a notebook checklist, the calendar on your smartphone or invest in a year-long planner, you’ll always have your plan on-hand and never miss a deadline or to-do list item.
Become a meal prepper
Set aside time each week to plan your meals and prep them too. Chop fruits and vegetables, pre-cook meats, and cook pasta or rice in advance so you can pull together easy meals in no time. This saves you time and money, and helps you eat healthier when you’re tempted to grab fast food on your busiest days.
When each day feels full to the brim, follow these tips to maximize each hour and be more productive in the new year.
Doing yoga together can have benefits far beyond the exercise itself - for you, for your partner, and for your relationship together.
There are so many different benefits that come along with regular yoga practice. Yoga can help you balance the mind and the body. When you embark on yoga practice with your partner, this can be very beneficial to your relationship. Even having your own yoga practices can help strengthen your relationship.
When a couple has mutual interests, they have something they can share together. It’s something that provides ongoing conversation topics. It’s something you can practice together. There are couple’s classes that you can try out. You can also help each other with challenges you may have within your individual yoga practice. As you learn new things about yoga, this is something the two of you can talk about during dinner or while relaxing at the end of the day.
When you practice yoga, it tends to provide you with a sense of enlightenment that you didn’t have before. It can help you become more in touch with your emotions, including patience and compassion. Improving the level of compassion that you have can help you to be a better partner to your spouse. You’ll understand their needs better, and you can change the way that you react to their actions each day.
It’s incredibly important to maintain a level of attraction and passion within a relationship. Yoga can help with this attraction. Also, building physical stamina with exercise could positively affect your romantic life by helping you meet your partner's expectations when it comes to sex. There’s something very passionate about watching your partner focus on their own yoga practice. The body moves very freely and naturally.
Yoga allows you to be more connected to your inner self. As you go through your yoga moves, you have to pay very close attention to your breath and current position. Your state of mind should be very centered. When you’re able to make this connection inside of your own body, you will be better able to connect with your partner. This can be during intercourse, but the connection can be helpful throughout the day-to-day.
If you have never taken yoga before, you can likely find a beginner’s class in your area that will educate you on this practice. If you’ve been practicing for a while now, you can try taking a more advanced class or trying your own personal practice at home. You can look for a couple’s yoga class that you and your partner can take together. Doing these things can really help to strengthen your relationship with each other.
The divorce rate in the United States is going down, but that could be because many people are deciding not to get married. However, if you want the happily ever after that exists within a married partnership, it is possible. You just have to put in the work to have a long, happy marriage.
Work on Communication
To stay married to someone happily through the years, you have to know how to communicate with your spouse. Not everyone communicates in the same way, but there are ground rules for healthy communication that can help your marriage stay strong. Avoid raising your voice or name-calling and don't use passive-aggressive remarks to get a point across. These strategies are less about communicating and more about fault-finding. Figure out the best way for you and your partner to communicate effectively, and then stick to it. Remember, communication is as much about listening as it is talking.
Resolve Any Issues That May Lead to a Future Divorce
You and your partner should work to resolve any issues that could lead to a divorce before getting married in order to achieve a long, happy marriage. Though we all come with baggage, minimizing the baggage can make a big difference in the success of your marriage. Take the time to truly know yourself before attempting to enter a lifetime partnership with someone else. This means understanding issues you need to resolve so that they don't create barriers in your marriage. It also means exploring the parts of yourself you may not like so that you can practice accepting who you are and changing what you believe is truly not acceptable.
Learn How to Forgive
You aren't perfect, and your partner isn't either. Know that going into marriage and be prepared to forgive each other. Over the years, each of you will grow and change, and that doesn't come without some missteps that are challenging to overcome. Learn to celebrate the differences you have. While there is behavior that should not be accepted in a marriage, many common marital complaints are normal and a result of being around your partner so much. Know that this is the person who will see you at your worst, and you will see them the same way. Leave plenty of room for grace, and don't hold grudges.
Marriage is a journey that takes work and lots of love. It is possible to have a lasting, happy marriage if you're willing to put in the effort.
Here’s another article you might like: 5 reasons why talking about money can enhance a relationship
Surgery for seniors is considered serious business by medical experts. Older surgical patients can react differently to anesthesia and the stress of undergoing surgery far differently than younger healthy adults do. Some seniors take more time to recover, are more vulnerable to infection and might experience post-surgical cognitive decline. It is essential that seniors and/or their family members discuss surgical risks and alternative options with their doctors beforehand.
As individuals age, their body systems can slow down significantly. Some seniors develop circulation problems, heart disease, endocrine disorders, bone density, and muscle mass losses or issues with mobility. All these circumstances and a number of others may make an older surgical patient recover slower than their younger counterparts. Some studies show that surgical patients over the age of sixty can take up to three to six months to regain their presurgical functioning status.
More Vulnerable to Infection
Seniors who have developed one of many autoimmune disorders are more vulnerable to getting an infection following surgery. Surgical equipment must be properly sterilized in an autoclave before each case before introducing them to the sterile surgical field. Introducing contaminants into the surgical site can lead to severe infections that may require further surgery to address. Hospitals are notorious for harboring many different types of bacteria, fungi, and viruses, and strict compliance with OSHA and other governmental regulation entities is required for all types of health care facilities. The surgical operating suites must be thoroughly cleaned and decontaminated in between cases to meet even stricter cleaning guidelines. Any opening into the body, including urinary catheters, feeding tubes, IV lines and the surgical incisions themselves, put all surgical patients at a higher risk for postoperative infections with seniors facing the greatest challenges. Proper assessment for higher infection risks, appropriate use of intraoperative antibiotics and close postoperative supervision by trained medical personnel for a longer time can all decrease some of these surgical risks for seniors.
Postoperative delirium has long been known to exist in older patient populations undergoing surgical procedures. This condition typically only lasts from a few hours to a few days following surgery. However, many health care experts caution that seniors pose a higher risk of longer-lasting cognitive decline than the average healthy and younger surgical patient population groups. This cognitive decline in elderly patients can last from a week to three months during postoperative recovery, and this cognitive loss can impact memory and the function of many body systems, including the ability to eat, move, speak clearly and ambulate, among others. Usually, POCD (postoperative cognitive dysfunction) is transient in nature and will resolve with a higher level of postoperative care. However, some medical specialists believe that permanent cognitive decline can occur, especially in seniors.
Seniors and their caregivers should discuss these possible postoperative complications with their family doctor, surgeon, and other specialists prior to having surgery. These risks can often be decreased with some preventative precautions and preparations.
If you or an elderly relative is going to have surgery soon, take a look at these tips on how to prepare.
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