I recently watched a Ted Talk by Guy Winch, where he discussed why we all need to practice emotional aid first. Meaning, most of the time we are so focused on taking care of our bodies, hair, faces, and everything else that allows us to look presentable in front of our peers. The things we most often forget to take care of is our thoughts and our emotions. I might also add that it includes taking care of our souls ultimately. A huge number of people are placed on anti depressants and anti anxiety medications each year when in fact some of them do not actually need it. They just need to focus on their emotional health. (Of course there are some who are required to take these meds for medical reasons, but we can all agree that not all the people on such medications really need to be on them). That being said, instead of spending thousands of dollars each year on prescription medications to make us feel “normal” and “okay” why not spend that time and money on meditation classes, yoga, possibly some therapy sessions (that do not include a prescription at the end of it). Reading and traveling might also help one get better if he or she is having a rough patch in his or her life. Traveling allows you to see how other people live, put your own life in perspective, and let your mind wander around the foreign lands and forget all about the worries at home. Reading allows you to escape to a far away place; read a story, perhaps a story that might help you in your situation. In either case, these two options are a great way to change your thinking and see life through a positive lens. Anxiety can be overcome by practicing the thing that makes you anxious (such as public speaking, meeting new people, etc) while controlling your emotions and thoughts at that moment. There are tons of ways to reduce anxiety through exercise routines, meditation, and other helpful natural remedies.
We also need to teach our children how to be more aware of their feelings, emotions, and thoughts. From an early age, children should be introduced to such topics, perhaps even yoga and meditation options in their classes or pre-school programs. We have to teach our children how to be calm in different situations and how to control one’s thoughts and keep them positive. If we start from an early age, then it is more likely they will be able to handle stress better once they are older and they will have no need for anti anxiety or stress medications. Young people today are more prone to get involved in drugs and even have thoughts of suicide due to feeling lonely or left out. We can also teach children that being alone and loneliness are two different things. Being alone is healthy in many cases as it allows you to spend some time with yourself, to know yourself, to practice controlling your thoughts and emotions. It also allows that human interactions be more special because you have a better idea of who you are and what you want out of life; therefore, that feeling of loneliness will not occur as you will experience life in a more positive way. Not to say that everyone should be an introvert, but instead just allow yourself some time to be alone with your thoughts and emotions, learn to control them and grow them in a positive direction. Once you do that, there will be no room for negativity or bad habits, or loneliness.
This is not for everyone, of course, as some may need some medication due to medical conditions, and et cetera, but overall I believe we can significantly reduce the pharmaceutical intake in our countries by simply being more aware of our thoughts, practicing emotional first aid, and understanding our abilities to control our responses to things that happen around us.
Things I am thankful for: being able to control my thoughts and emotions, enjoying time spent alone, and for informative Ted Talks.