Over the past 4.5 years in business, I've seen a monumental shift in the way we support people who are struggling with mental illness.
No longer are people prepared to rely on medication (the fact that they're just about as effective as placebo's may have something to do with this... (Penn, E., & Tracy, D. K., 2012)).
It may even have something to do with the fact that it's unbelievably difficult to see anyone when you know that you're struggling (some services still having disgustingly high waiting times).
But in my mind there's something much more profound happening.
People are taking their power back.
Many people up and down the Country, in fact, across the globe are waking up to the truth about mental illness -
1) It has nothing to do with genetics (a genetic predisposition does not guarantee you will develop anything)
2) It is not a life debilitating illness that has no chance for recovery
3) People can make small, simple lifestyle changes and see dramatic changes to their mental wellbeing
4) Mental illness is not the same as a physical illness and does not follow a simple trajectory
5) Any attempt at a one-size-fits-all treatment approach is doomed to fail because we're all unique
In fact, just whizzing through my Twitter feed, I see that there are so many non-mental health professionals who get it and yet, so many professionals still stuck in the old, outdated medical model of thinking.
Long ago, I decided I would champion a new wave of mental health services, one which only used labels internally so that we could understand the symptoms, but not as a definitive guide to how someone is.
I also very quickly embraced the combined effectiveness of both Western & Eastern practices because they both work.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy works.
Emotional Freedom Technique works.
Forgiveness therapy works.
Essential Oils work.
Meditation, prayer, laughter yoga, shamanic healing, energy alignment.... all work.
Heck even doing nothing works.
But they all also fail.
The worrying thing is that so far the only thing I consistently see failing is the people who are using the tools.
Not because they don't want to help but because they are so rigid in their thinking they cannot recognise that mental health treatment needs to be flexible.
I was brought up in a medical household (my mums a nurse & my dad is a physicist - we all have a love of science, facts, research & proof).
I studied psychology, I trained in psychology and I lived psychology.
But I always knew, it wasn't full-proof.
I knew it failed.
& I was desperate to know why.
What I am about to say next is going to hurt (sorry).
Everything fails if we believe it will.
Thankfully, everything works if we believe it will.
The placebo effect & the doing nothing approach proves this.
The thing is, not everyone has rock-solid faith that they can turn their genes off & on (epigenetics is a thoroughly interesting topic if you're interested) or that they can change their outcomes.
Many (myself included) will wish, hope and pray that things change.
We'll believe it 99%.
But the 1% that just doesn't believe it's possible will derail EVERYTHING.
& then you have rock-solid proof that you can't change things.
This is why the tools, techniques and someone else helping you is important.
This is why my programmes are so successful - I know with every fiber of my being the person I'm helping can get better if they just do the work.
I am their 100% and very quickly they become they break down the old, outdated beliefs and start to prove things can change.
So how has mental health care changed?
It's stopped being about looking outside of ourselves for the magic bullet delivered by someone else and instead is to do with going inside and taking action.
Taking actions the future version of ourselves would take.
So start asking yourself, if I was mentally healthy right now what would I think about this situation? What would I do? Where would I go?
Then most importantly, do these things.
& just in case you're wondering, start with your diet, do some exercise, get a good nights sleep & allow your body to start pumping the hormones it needs too around your body so that you can feel good.
Starting with your thoughts doesn't work.
None of my clients are allowed anywhere near their negative thoughts until week 7.
It's all about action.
& in all fairness, this is the actual reason it works.
Biology first, psychology second - always.
But it's not easy, we often can't do it on our own & this is the exact reason I rock up on facebook every morning (mon-fri at 7am, sat at 8).
I'm like the Mr Motivator for your mental health.
Follow the link below to like my Facebook page so that you can start every day the mentally healthy way:-
See you then
x Katie x
Penn, E., & Tracy, D. K. (2012). The drugs don’t work? antidepressants and the current and future pharmacological management of depression. Therapeutic Advances in Psychopharmacology, 2(5), 179–188. http://doi.org/10.1177/2045125312445469