The truth about working in mental health

I wanted to be honest…I always am on this blog. I want to give anyone who’s considering the mental health profession an insight into the horrific yet beautiful world of mental health working.

I am currently working in the mental health world, something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. It’s something I am extremely passionate about and to be honest I just love helping others. But lets be honest…nothing prepares you for the world you will be thrown into.

1). You will hear some sad stories– When I say sad stories, I don’t mean someone who has had a bout of depression or suffered with years of anxiety, I mean someone who has been abandoned, bullied, abused and isolated, their whole life. There are some stories you will never be prepared for, but somehow they touch your life in some way. I start to question what a “bad day” really means for me, because when I compare it to some people, I’ve merely suffered a single bad day in my life. Now I’m not saying anyone’s suffering is any less or more than the next person, but it makes you think about what you really have in life.

2). It becomes extremely hard to switch off- Unlike some jobs, it’s not easy to come home, put the day behind you and get on with your night…you bring things home with you. Stories, worries and memories. It can be hard to leave behind certain individuals without wondering how they will cope with the rest of the day or how they will sleep tonight. Over time you will learn how to switch off (I’m still learning) but please keep this in mind.🤍

3). Some days are harder than others– Like any other job, some days are tough and you HAVE to look after yourself. Talk to a loved one when you come home, let them know if anything upset you today, because some days can be really hard. Make sure you put time aside to look after your own mental health (I’m really going to try more with this one).

4). You will be uplifted- As much as it can be sad and hard at times, seeing someone smile and knowing that you have put the smile there is the most rewarding thing in the world. The odd nice comment, the odd laugh and the odd thank you. It makes every hard day worth it. Remember why you started…to change someone’s life.❤️

5). You will be mentally and physically drained– Honestly. It is draining sometimes. Listening, helping, advising, problem solving and pulling someone out of the darkest time of their life…it can be hard on the mind. But just be honest with yourself. Admit when you need a break and remember that you are allowed to take a step back.

6). You will be treated badly at times- Sometimes you will be the only person an individual sees in a day. Therefore you’ll get the good, the bad and the ugly too. Sometimes you have to be tough and people don’t like that. It’s important that you don’t take any negative comments/ verbal abuse personally…it really was never to do with you anyway.🙌🏻

7). You become someone’s lifeline– As hard as it is sometimes, remember that you are someone’s life line…their only friend, their only support and their only shoulder to cry on. This is an honour, cherish it and remember how amazing you are for wanting to help people. You have a purpose in life and that is truly beautiful.❤️

I hope my honesty has come through in this blog. As hard as my job is, I know how important it is and there’s something so special about making someone’s life better. If you’re considering this path, remember what I’ve said, and remember that you are amazing and capable of anything.🙌🏻

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