[ Karyir Riba ]
This pandemic situation that we are facing together globally has, in more ways than one, taught all of us many life lessons. This sounds too clichéd, pardon me, but it is also the truth.
Many of us have found time during this pandemic to nurture our hobbies. Many have found out what great cooks and bakers they are. Many of us have discovered that we do have green thumbs and we have grown our own food in these five months, or have at least tried to. Many of us have discovered talents hidden within us and have done a lot of new things which we could have never got the time to do, given our busy schedules during life without the coronavirus.
This unexpected situation in all of our lives has made us realize a lot – both good and bad. While most people have had the time to reconnect with their families, and most importantly, with themselves, many have also touched the darker side of their mental wellbeing during this time.
Unfortunately, mental wellbeing is still a topic that needs a lot of awareness and empathy in our society. For, whenever someone dwelling with some mental issues tries to reach out to people, they are tagged very conveniently as attention seekers. To avoid being judged as an attention seeker, many decide to not speak about it at all. Some who try to seek help are ostracized by their family and relatives.
Now, what is mental wellbeing? Our mental wellbeing can be defined as our thoughts and feelings, and how we cope with the ups and downs of our everyday life. There is a very thin line between mental wellbeing and mental health. If we live for too long with low mental wellbeing, it might turn into a mental health issue, which means that although not the same, the two can surely influence each other.
So, what can affect a person’s mental wellbeing? In order to answer this question, we first need to understand that not all people are the same and not everyone’s mental attitude towards any given situation is the same. What affects one person in a certain way might not have the same effect on another person. It’s all about how a person manages to handle their emotions under different circumstances.
During these testing times, we have come across news of many people who have fallen prey to depression and many have also resorted to taking their own lives.
If we look at the case of the late actor Sushant Singh Rajput, for example, we might be able to understand the importance of mental wellbeing a little more. Although the case has taken a lot of turns till date, initial reports had alleged that the young and budding actor had taken his own life after suffering from depression. Even after being such a strong persona on screen and being loved by millions of his fans, the man died by suicide.
This goes to show that any person, irrespective of their age, physical abilities, appearance, social status or financial status, can have issues with their mental wellbeing.
As per reports, the actor was depressed because of being left out and for being ganged up against by some other powerful groups of the industry he was working in. To some people this might look like a rubbish excuse for someone to kill himself. However, if we take a closer look, our relationships and our emotional quotient with people around us play vital roles in maintaining a healthy mental wellness.
The feeling of being left out and not being included can take a toll on your self-esteem. That the late actor was an ‘outsider’ and wasn’t ‘allowed’ to mingle in with the others with better footholds in the industry was what was being said, and that this led to him getting into depression, and ultimately taking his own life.
This need not only happen in the movie industry. This can happen to anybody in any given scenario. Like someone joining a new boarding school or a new workplace or getting married to live in an altogether unfamiliar place, for that matter.
Now, let’s try to recreate Rajput’s scenario in a simple set up. Imagine yourself trying to settle down in a new town where nobody knows you. Now, even the most introverted person/non-party animal needs a friend, a confidante, because human beings are social animals. So, you are befriended by someone belonging to that town. Suddenly, something goes wrong, and since you aren’t behaving the way your ‘friend’ wants you to behave, he/she decides to sabotage you.
This gets easy for this ‘friend’ because he/she already belongs to this town and has a huge social circuit. Whatever he/she tells people about you is believed. You are prejudiced against. People gang up against you. You are left to feel and believe that you are an outsider who can never be their own.
Situations like these can be extremely harmful for your mental wellbeing. You can become very under-confident and have extremely low self-esteem, wondering what your ‘friend’ must be saying to people behind your back to jeopardize your reputation as a person. You meet new people but in the back of your mind you are not confident because you can only think about what this person must have been told about you.
It can get very depressing for anybody who goes through such circumstances. At the same time, it is also upto the person to pull themselves out of the situation.
In situations like this, it is most important to remember that being social is not going to make you successful but your talents are. Make use of your time to develop your talents and make yourself stronger. Build a career for yourself and make yourself successful.
Surround yourself with people who care, rather than trying to fit in with people who are not ready to accept you. Let the quality matter and not the quantity.
Seek guidance if you need to, but never give in to pressure. Suicide is never a solution. Bouncing back with more zeal and with more strength is the best answer you can give to anybody who has ever tried to pull you down. Earn respect. Respect from others does matter, but it’s most important for you to have respect for yourself.
Always remember that you are much stronger than you believe you are. Just take the time to reach out to your inner self and work towards a goal. It is all in the mind. Do not allow your mind to take over your thoughts and your mental wellbeing.
When you manage to come out and above of it, you will realize that these unnecessary issues were too petty compared to all the love and care your near and dear ones have for you. Wasting your time and energy on such measly antics would never have been worth it. In the end, what matters is your inner peace and mental wellbeing.
They tried to bury me, but they didn’t know I was a seed. – Mexican proverb