January 22nd, 2019 at some minutes to 4pm was the day I was signed off from seeing my therapist.
Emotional. Absolutely emotional.
I was emotional because when I started seeing her, I was more or less convinced that I could not get better or at least get to a stage where I have always wanted to be.
I have mentioned in a previous blog which was 60 days of Selfishness that I was going to therapy, but I didn’t really go into much detail about it. So I have been seeing a therapist since late July/early August. The type of therapy I received was a mix between interpersonal and emotion-focused. It has since given me clarity with my past, peace for my present and a positive mind for my future.
I sought therapy because due to a few life changes and a lot of negative things happening all at one time, I typically broke down and couldn’t cope with it all. I was so low to a point not even I could get myself out of it. And I have gotten myself out of a lot so I knew it was super bad. So for the sake of myself and my children, therapy and prayer seemed to be the best options for me.
I cried through my first few sessions, I’m not sure if she was able to understand exactly what I was explaining, bless her. But overtime, my sessions became easier, I was able to open up and address some very horrible truths, revisit some very horrid memories and swallow some very big pills.
5 things I have learnt from going to therapy:
1. It’s normal.
It is absolutely normal to question life, your purpose and to be unsure of your existence.
2. Adapting new behaviours.
In order to kill a pattern from reoccurring in your life, you must first recognise it and understand the reason for the re-occuring pattern then adapt new thinking and behaviours to conquer the reoccurring pattern. For example, you always lose weight but when you’ve lost enough you start eating unhealthily again and becoming inconsistent with fitness, therefore putting back on all the weight you’ve lost. In order to conquer this pattern, you must establish why you do this and once you are aware of the “why “, you can then start to adapt behaviours in order to continue with your weight loss after a particular point so it becomes a lifestyle rather than a onset offset cycle. Hopefully that example made sense.
It wont happen overnight, if anything I have learnt is that I need to be patient with myself. There were many things I had conquered during therapy more quickly than others. I found it frustrating that after such a particular amount of time, I was still having a problem with a few things and I’d get frustrated as to why I haven’t got over or dealt with them yet. I have since and I am still learning to take a step back and understand that somethings will take longer than others and that’s ok. It’s just about catching yourself in the moment and re-centering.
4. Being humble.
During therapy, I had to take some blame for the things I had let happen in my life. I believe at this point, I started to see life a little differently. There are many areas in my life where I didn’t speak up and I let things slide and because of that I held a lot of anger and also allowed people to treat me badly because of this passive behaviour. I had to take ownership of my part and learn to adapt behaviours in order to ensure that does not continue in anyway shape or form because no one else, apart from my children, is more important than me.
With everything you want in your life being consistent is a key thing in order to achieve it. So one thing I suffered with was a negative mindset. It got so bad that I had nothing good to say about myself. Through therapy, I was able to conquer that and use affirmations, time to myself and doing things I love to get out of that mindset. But sometimes life takes over and you end up putting everyone’s needs before your own again and before you know it you’re feeling worn out, lost, and crappy…. This is where the consistency comes in. I must continue with the affirmations and all the other things which help me stay positive so that my vessel is at least half full on the bad days. This is easier said than done, I mean the past couple of weeks have been very hard for me simply because I had forgotten myself and gotten comfortable. So when hardship came, I cracked. In short consistency is key and I am still learning.
I won’t sit here and say that I’m cured. I wouldn’t say to anyone that Therapy is a cure or quick fix to get over your issues. I would say, for me, it helped me to understand myself more and understand my “whys”, I was able express myself completely without fear of judgement and learn new ways to handle my hardships.Overall, I am ok. I am much better. And my thought processes are getting to a place where I have always wanted them to be. Through therapy, I am now becoming the person that’s not easily offended, someone who doesn’t hold on to negative emotions until boiling point, a self hating person, a person who acts out of fear, caring too much about what other people think…. Need I go on?. However, I can humbly say that there are times where I can repeat these said behaviours but like I said I am not fixed or cured and rather than going into a depression which is my go to, I can now recenter my behaviour and bring myself back to positivity.
I have also found that through being open about my struggles in life, motherhood and my mental state, a lot of people have opened up to me. This has shown me that mental health issues are at an all time high, especially in the black community, in particular black men who are conditioned to be strong and emotionless in most cases, but I won’t digress today! Our children also, who are suffering with mental health issues as young as the age of 5.
To close. The way you think and feel should be prioritised above everything. I believe that everyone should seek therapy or counsel whether it be from a professional or a close friend/family member. Being at a breaking point at some point in your life isn’t weird or something to hide. Being vulnerable is normal. Feeling alone is normal. Let’s learn to feel your emotions and not avoid them.
As I drop my mic and leave this here, I do hope even if it is just one reader that if you have been feeling that you need to seek help, please do it. If you don’t know where to start you can call the Samaritans, speak to your GP or call NHS 111. I am not a professional of course but more than happy to share my experience in more detail and tell you how I found my therapist and anything else.
With that being said…
I want to thank you for reading…
Until next time…
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