Series: Asking for help – Part 3: Tools

Welcome back!

This is part three of a four part series, on helping yourself (or someone you know) with a mental crisis. The focus this week will be the tools available to to begin the healing process. If you haven’t read my first post, you can catch up here.

Can I just say with all honesty, that I didn’t believe in medication, therapy, psychiatrist, group therapy, and all those things related to mental illness because of how much my parents and other Filipino elders spoke about seeing someone for your mental health. So I was very skeptical until I started to do the work and use these tools. While these are not all the tools in mental health but these are some that are the most popular and what I’ve used to help me move forward. Guys, the tools and resources work!! I am living proof that if you utilize the resources around you and the tools that are given to you, it will change your mindset.

Medication

This was the hardest tool for me to accept at the beginning of my journey. It took a lot of coaxing from my therapist to even be open to the idea of taking any type of daily medication. While there is a waiting period to see any improvement in mental state — from two to eight weeks, side effects, and the trial and error to find the right dosage, I do not regret my daily medication.

Here are the different types of medications:

  • antidepressants
  • Anti-anxiety
  • Mood stabilizers
  • Antipsychotics
  • Simulants

Disclaimer: I am not a profession on this subject, you can find more information about these types of medications here. Consult with your physician or another clinical liaison to find the right medication and dosage for you.  

Psychotherapy tools

Depending on your symptoms, a therapist will also suggest additional psychotherapy in a form of group therapy. This is where others share their mental health journey in a confidential group setting and receive resources and tool of how to deal with these symptoms. The nice thing about doing group therapy is seeing other people who have similar hardships and knowing you are not the only one. Group therapy can be as casual as a weekly meeting to a multi day commitment for hours at a time. It will depend on what you and your therapist deem the best plan of care.

I was not willing to try these tools and was truly forced into using them in group therapy in order to continue with my then therapist. These are some of the main tool I have heard about. I honestly haven’t used all of them but I do have a preference that I will share later in the blog.

Tools given in psychotherapy — individual and group:

No one size fits all

There are no right or wrong tools to utilize in your mental health journey. Everyone responds to things differently. I have found that what works for me doesn’t work for someone else. The ultimate goal is to find the right tool for you to manage your mental illness. Let’s be honest, it takes a lot of energy to go against everything you believe about yourself. Doing the work, everyday is painful, mentally and physically draining but I will tell you — it is worth it.

What tool has helped you the most? If I did or didn’t talk about it in this post, please share your experience below.

And remember, its ok to not be ok, tomorrow is a new day! See you next week.

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