World Mental Health Day
It was World Mental Health Day yesterday, what did you do for your mental health?
Personally, I realized that sharing is something that works for me. However, it’s not always easy to verbalize how we feel, which was pretty much the reason why I got into a rut* before.
Mental Health Hack
So, today, let me share a hack I learned from some sessions I facilitated.
Instead of directly talking about our participants’ feelings, we asked them to pick an object that best represents how they are feeling at the moment and use that object to explain why. This allowed them to step back from their emotions and open up more. It’s still not going to be easy but it did make it easier, and that’s usually just enough.
Enough to get us started, to slowly reveal more of ourselves.
Walk The Talk
Btw, we don’t just let our participants do this. As always, we walked the talk. In a debrief session, we were asked to do the same thing, but it was more specific. We were asked to find an object that best represents how we were feeling while we were facilitating the sessions.
My object was a basketball
For those who know me well, this was probably expected. 😅 Here’s how I explained it.
- Unlike bicycling, where you can just take off from where you left off, it usually takes a while to get back into basketball, at least for me. It’s exactly the same way I felt facilitating again. Because of the long pause, I felt like a beginner again and had to spend more time to practice and catch up, observing actual sessions and recordings. There were moves (asking the right questions) I had a hard time pulling and there were moves (deep sharing) I found hard to defend.
- I realized how much I miss THE people. I love the camaraderie that comes with basketball, just as much as I love the friendship that came with facilitating together. However, it is NOT all roses all the time. Those who know me know I can be a tough coach and player on the basketball court. I am passionate as hell and expect the best from my teammates. In the same way, working at Next Step can be tough because we expect the best of each other and push each other to the limits. However, at the end of the day, I know how much we love and care for each other, and that’s something that I will always enjoy.
- I love basketball and would play it daily if I could. In the same way, I love facilitating and could still do it daily. However, there is a sense of sadness in knowing that I have to deprioritize both of these , for now. Facilitating because of some other life plans and basketball because, well, my knees can’t take it anymore.
Let It Out
It felt great when I shared this (back then) and it still feels great as I write this.
I suppose that’s the takeaway I want someone to get from this. That, once in a while, it’s good for us to find a way to release our emotions. Use metaphors, if you have to. Talk to a friend or a group of friends, if you’re comfortable. Publish an article, if you want to.
If you are not comfortable sharing yet, that’s fine too. Take the first step. Write it out then keep it in your personal journal. Heck, you might want to burn it after, that’s fine too. Just don’t keep it bottled up.
This World Mental Health Day just Let It Out.
Other Tips for Mental Health
There are other ways to take care of yourself. Letting it out works for me. That’s why I love talking to my friends and loved ones, and why I keep this blog.
How about you, what are YOU doing for your mental health?
“If you know how to deal with your mental health, it’s fine to keep it to yourself. But if you don’t, I think it’s good you open up because you might have someone around you who knows how to handle it.” ㅡ 201226, Kim Seokjin from 'The Atlantic' Interview #WorldMentalHealthDay pic.twitter.com/HRlKSK46A3— bts quotes archive⁷ ☁️📚 (@btsqtsarchive) October 10, 2021