• Ben R

Keeping My Head Above Water

Updated: Nov 12, 2020

" It is a lot easier to stay focused and keep your head above water when you are pursuing your ultimate dreams!" - Maneet Chauhan


After all the struggle and emotions from the past few weeks, it would be very easy to be just giving up on life.


Throw my hands up in the air, binge eat unhealthy food, stop exercising, and curl up in the fetal position.


The emotional toll of those weeks and Covid overall would make anyone hit a breaking point.


I've hit many of those points on a small scale. I'm human. I have emotions, fears, regrets...just like you all do. It's NORMAL. It's NOT WRONG. If someone tells you otherwise, tell them to work on themselves instead. Seriously! (Please be firm, but kind). Yes, I know we would often like to tell them to ____ off, but it doesn't do anyone any good in the end. We have enough anger in this world.


Truth is, it's much easier to go from a positive/healthy mindset to a negative/unhealthy mindset than it is to go the other direction.


Staying in a healthy mindset takes work. Like Covid, it doesn't discriminate at all.


For instance, my partner has been unable to fully grieve the loss of Fiona. From the time we had to put her down, we have been focusing a significant amount of our time to keeping Hazel healthy and safe. She likes human contact a lot, so my partner hasn't been able to get away all that much. It's rough, but she continues to persevere in the face of adversity.


She's been doing it for most of her life.


Our relationship is kind of unique. Where she has had to fight for her physical health for years, I've had to fight for my mental health. But they are both as equally as important to keep as healthy as possible.


Knowing that I will be continuing to social distance for the foreseeable future, reminds me that I must continue to do what I can, with what I have to continue on my journey as a mental health advocate.


It's OK to NOT BE OKAY.


It's ok to say, "Dude, I really just need some time to unwind and process my thoughts and emotions." Both internal and external need to be processed. That's how we learn and grow, for ourselves.


Remember, only YOU can change yourself.


Since I believe it's important to not sugarcoat mental health, there's something that has and continues to bother me.


Those who continue to complain about their mental health on social media.


We all have difficult days and often for a long period of time.


But do you really think it's beneficial to express to others continuously that no one understands you and/or then blame them for how you perceive things to be?


If we want to work on eliminating the stigma surrounding mental illness, shouldn't we be calling for an ear to listen to us?


I'm by no means a perfect example of healthy mental health all the time, but I know I need to do something for myself to SHOW others that I don't just live in a victim mindset all the time.


In all of us, mental health issues or not, there is something in us that will light a fire in us. It's already there for the most part. It's just under a large pile of crap!


So how do we find that "spark" to begin? Well, watch this great Ted Talk from Mel Robbins.


I want you to think in terms of the hierarchy of needs while watching this. Likely, you have 50% of them already met. Her solution is not a popular one, but you wouldn't be alive today without doing it. Let me know your thoughts from the talk. I'm curious on your take of it.





The part above was written yesterday (Tuesday). I had stopped to take care of Hazel and ended up not getting back to it.


I've been in a more depressive state the last 24 hours since I left off.


To be honest, I'm unhappy with life right now, even though I know inside I have good, positive things around me. There's just a lot going on and outlets I would normally have to my disposal to cope aren't there, especially when you are social distancing.


What I wouldn't give to hang out with a bunch of guys and eat unhealthy food right now!


I feel like I'm trapped in a prison, even though I know that's not a true reality.


I could go on and on, but I won't.


I was going to publish an article on coping during Covid, but I will instead post it on my Facebook page instead.


Before I end this blog post, I want to call attention to something. Something I've thought about since I woke up today.






***My Sincere Apology***



In a previous blog post or two and occasionally on my Facebook page, I have made comments about lack of participation in my work.


Particularly, I mentioned that no one was now contributing to my September newsletter after all the personal touches for the first one.


Regrettably, I realized I most likely pissed off some of my contributors with the statement. No one likes to feel that they're being personally attacked. Even if I say thank you for what you did do for me, the personal attack part will always stick in your minds.


I hope some of you can sincerely forgive me. I don't always combine passion and emotion in the best of ways. I will truly try my best to not do so again.


I'm sorry. I know we are all dealing with a lot right now.


- Ben






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