Friday, October 17, 2008

Mental Health And Our Economy

While I plan on posting a lot of facts and data about ADHD/psycho-educational coaching and how it differs from traditional psychotherapy, I wanted to begin by extending some personal thoughts about one thing that is on everyone's minds these days--the state of our economy--and my passion--mental health.

Regardless of political viewpoint, I think we can all agree that our happiness on this earth comes down to one thing--how we feel. How we feel about ourselves, our loved ones, our society...our future. It's our perception of how we are succeeding in life and how the ones we love are succeeding in their lives, that causes us to either wake up with a smile or cry under the covers all day.

In times of financial hardship, it may seem that things like paying for mental health services and furthering our education need to take a backseat. How are we supposed to worry about getting happy and getting better organized when the milk carton is half empty, right?

In my opinion, it is when times are the worst that people need things like psycho-educational coaching or good old talk therapy the most. Coaching has helped many people not only learn better skills in organization, motivation, and time management, to help them compete in a competitive job market or manage their finances, but it has also changed people's perceptions and how they feel about themselves. When you are attempting to learn new skills your confidence grows, and that milk carton that before was half empty becomes...half full!

In my 2007 dissertation study on coaching, the number one thing my participants stated that they had gained from the experience was "realization, awareness, and understanding". Right behind that was "increased focus and control" and "increased organization", followed guessed it..."more positive."

I know it's hard to look beyond the day to day, but we only have one shot at this life. So why not make it the happiest, most fulfilling life we can lead? Whether you see a therapist or coach, or even hash your problems out with a good friend over coffee, take care of your mental health and continue to develop your life skills. Even in the worst of financial times, if you or your child had a physical illness you would go to the doctor, right? Well, the same goes for what you can't see.

Take care.

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