Mental health seems to be a pretty hot topic these days, doesn’t it.
In these times of pandemics and lockdowns and political divisions and hyper-partisan politics and social media angst and trolling, psychology has definitely become a hot-button issue. And as far as mental conditions go, there are two that seem to be especially prominent – anxiety and depression.
As someone who has a tendency to think quite a lot (and possibly to overthink even more) I certainly can’t avoid these issues. I can see it in the struggles of some of the other people in my life. Which leads me to reflect on my own mental health. How am I travelling in these difficult and trying times? How exactly am I coping psychologically?
Well, my usual reaction is to think that I’m not doing too bad. Sure, there are those times when I feel kind of down. I’m certainly not sleeping as well as I’d like to be. And I find that watching the news, reading the paper, or surfing the web can sometimes be a painful experience.
But on the whole, I’m coping ok. I can make it though most days and I’m generally pretty functional. Hey, I’m even managing to hold down a full-time job, and get a bit of writing done as well. As far as mental health goes, the glass is definitely more than half full.
Except that occasionally, there are those times when I begin to wonder.
Every so often, I decide (for no particularly good reason) to do one of those little psych tests you see on the web. I know, you shouldn’t take these too seriously, but I just can’t help myself.
I answer the questions as honestly as I can. How am I feeling? What is my response to world events? How would I place myself along this range of emotions?
And what do I find?
Almost inevitably, the surveys will tell me that a) I’m anxious, or b) I’m depressed.
I don’t really feel that way. And I don’t really feel that the answers I selected should have indicated these things. I reckon that my responses were pretty much the only sane reaction to the current state of the world.
So maybe I really am anxious or depressed, but I don’t see that is a problem. I see it as a completely rational way to be in an anxious and depressed world.
And for anyone out there who isn’t anxious and depressed. You might want to think about getting some counselling, because I reckon there’s definitely something not right about that.
Posted by Jonathan Gould and tagged as