The Power of Being Open About My Mental Health

The Power of Being Open About My Mental Health


Sharing my mental health struggles was a significant turning point in my life and it came to a shock for a lot of people that knew me. I did it quite publically by releasing the first episode of my mental well-being podcast, Enlightened by Aoife.  It wasn't an easy journey, but it led me to a place of connection, understanding, and self-acceptance. In this blog, I want to share my experience of being open about my mental health and the positive changes it brought to my life.


When I decided to be open about my mental health, something incredible happened, I began to connect with people who truly understood what I was going through. It was like finding a community that spoke the same language. We shared our experiences, coping strategies, and our well-being wins. It was comforting to know that I wasn't alone and that there wasn't anything inherently wrong with me. This support network became an invaluable source of strength and encouragement so I tried to share it with others the only way I knew how in the middle of a global pandemic, Instagram. I knew what it felt like to try and cope with mental illness alone and i didnt want anyone else to feel how I felt.


Being open about my mental health also meant that I had to face the reality that not everyone would be supportive. Some friendships faded away because they only appreciated the fun, energetic side of me. It was tough and initially made me feel rejected and inadequate. However, with time, I realized that I couldn't make everyone like me, no matter how hard I tried. I began to understand that true friends would accept and support me, regardless of my struggles.


As I let go of superficial connections and friendships with standards I couldn't always meet, I discovered the power of authentic relationships. Having a support network of empathetic, understanding, and kind people became a game-changer. These were the individuals who loved and accepted me for who I was, without expecting me to put on a show. They stood by me through the ups and downs, offering unwavering support. Being able to show up as my authentic self allowed me to cultivate self-worth, self-compassion, and self-esteem. Healing became a more natural and transformative process.


During my journey to being honest with how I was actually feeling, I came across a mantra that resonated with me. I didn't even realise I was leaning on it or even practicing a mantra until I look back. It kept me going when I felt hurt by people's reactions to my open mental health conversations and I still use it today.


It is: "Those who mind don't matter, and those who matter won't mind." It reminded me that the opinions of those who couldn't accept me fully weren't worth my energy. Instead, I focused on nurturing relationships with people who genuinely cared about my well-being.


To conclude, opening up about my mental health was a difficult but transformative experience. Though I encountered challenges, went against what my family wanted and lost some friendships along the way, the connections I formed with understanding individuals were far more meaningful. I also received so many lovely messages from people saying how I was helping them understand, accept and communicate what they too are feeling.


Being authentic allowed me to develop a sense of self-worth, self-compassion, and self-esteem as well as build a community of amazing people all healing together.


So, let's remember that by embracing our true selves, we attract the support and understanding we need to heal, connect and grow.


Wishing you hope and healing,

Aoife x

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