The ability to reflect in hindsight and learn from tough situations is a brilliant skill, if only we could go back and talk to our younger selves to make those past troubles, that little bit easier.
In light of Children’s Mental Health Week (2nd feb-9th feb) CARBON magazine has decided to talk with an individual who struggled with mental health problems throughout their childhood, and has gathered 5 things that she wishes she could tell her younger self in those dark times. Having gone through the loss of both parents, battled with depression, anxiety and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder all before the age of 18, this individual has gained a lot of wisdom she wishes she could pass on to her younger self to make those years, slightly more bearable. This source would like to stay anonymous.
“Stop being so hard on yourself, none of this is your fault.”
At any age, it’s so easy to be hard on yourself and think that the only person to blame is yourself. Just because nobody has caused your mental illness does not mean that you are to blame. Children and young adults may be more guilty of this as they don’t understand what is going on in their head and may think that something is wrong with them. It is so important that they know it is not their fault.
“Time heals everything.”
A good nights sleep, a week, 3 months or a year. Time sometimes is the only thing that can make things feel okay. Trust the timing of things. What you are stressing over now, in most cases, won’t be worth a second of your time in a year.
“Cherish the good people you have around you as much as you can, for as long as you can.”
Everyone at all ages can benefit from this advice. It’s easy to take things, or people for granted but you never know what might happen. Don’t hold grudges, keep in contact with those you love and appreciate those who love you.
“Always trust your gut instinct. If something doesn’t feel right, it’s not right.”
Something that almost everyone will have experienced at one point in their life, learning this from a young age could help so many with uncomfortable or dangerous situations. Going against your gut instinct no matter how small the situation, is never good. We experience these feelings in our ‘gut’ for a reason.
“The quicker you learn to love yourself for who you are, the quicker this mental battle will be over.”
Loving and accepting yourself is tricky, especially in this day and age. It is an ongoing issue that many struggle with. However, if children today could get into the mindset and habit of loving themselves for who they are, so many battles may be solved or halved.
Although we might not be able to pass these words of wisdom on to our younger selves, we can pass them on to the younger generation. Most mental health disorders are developed by the age of 14. This means that children are struggling, so using these tips to help younger siblings, or other family members could go a long way!
By Ava Monaghan