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Mental Health Awareness Practices

Written by: Michelle Tillman-Cureton, LCMHC/PsychoTherapist


Self-Advocacy. Showing Up.




May is Mental Health Awareness Month! It's a time when we often focus on self-love techniques and self-care practices. We learn to prioritize effective communication as a key component of building strong relationships. However, connecting authentically can be challenging, especially in the post-COVID era.


Here are some key lessons for self-improvement and inner growth:


  • Self-care

  • Self-love

  • Self-awareness

  • Self-confidence


Self-advocacy plays a crucial role in feeling autonomous and empowered in our lives. It allows us to assert control and independence in our care and decision-making, leading to increased self-esteem and confidence.

Yet, self-advocacy often takes a backseat to other self-improvement practices. It's about showing up for yourself, setting boundaries, and standing your ground without resorting to defensiveness or confrontation.


Here are some insights I've gathered:


  1. We accept the love we believe we deserve.

  2. We normalize mistreatment and make excuses for it.

  3. We often confuse self-maintenance with self-care.

  4. Our relationship with spirituality can be complex and inconsistent.

  5. We tend to minimize the impact of trauma on our lives.

  6. We undervalue the depth of love and its requirements.

  7. Emotional wounds can desensitize us to pain.

  8. Healing is a journey, not a quick fix.

  9. We may cling to brokenness as a familiar state.

  10. We struggle to prioritize wellness over temporary relief.

  11. Hope can feel elusive in times of uncertainty.

As a clinician, I've learned that embracing our imperfections is essential for growth. It's not just about being okay with not being okay; it's about embracing the messy, challenging aspects of life as part of our journey towards wholeness.


During May, I urge you to make time for self-reflection and self-compassion. Practicing self-advocacy requires mindfulness and self-awareness, even when it feels uncomfortable. The more you practice, the easier it becomes.


This May, let's commit to incorporating self-advocacy into our lives and embracing our journey towards holistic wellness.


In health & wellness,


Michelle


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