To battle against the challenges I face regarding both my physical and mental health, I’m taking the following actions:
Practice self-care. I’ve gotten into the habit of scheduling spa time, girl time, therapy, meditation and more in the same ways I schedule work meetings and my daughter’s field trips. We have to remember that we can’t be good mothers, partners, daughters or friends if we’re not good to ourselves first.
Share the load. Often, we adopt the idea that it’s easier for us to do it all ourselves, but we have to remember the long term affects of that behavior. We need to begin asking for and accepting help, because we need and deserve it. Start with small tasks, then work toward larger ones.
Seek professional help. I always say that if I had Oprah dough, I’d pass out therapy the way she passes out her favorite things. Your girlfriends, as well meaning and supportive as they are, have their own Superwoman capes to throw off, and they honestly don’t know the answers, either. Seeing a mental health professional to confide in and ask direction from can mean the difference between life or death—for real, for real.
Josie Pickens is an educator, cultural critic and soldier of love. Follow her musings on Twitter @jonubian.
This article was originally posted April 15, 2014.