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20 Times to Give Yourself a Break


The internal dialog we have with ourselves can be brutal, especially when dealing with mental illness. Often, the people we have around us don’t help that feeling either. We feel like we should be “better.” That maybe just getting out of bed is as easy as they make it sound. That we really are just weak, and the solution to our illness is strength. But we know in our heads this isn’t true, and the reality is we would never judge someone else as harshly as we judge ourselves. So I have created a comprehensive list as to when it’s ok to give yourself a freaking break.

  1. When you’re trying to clear your head but you can’t

  2. When you had plans but can’t get out of bed to make them

  3. When you can’t stop crying

  4. When promised you would never harm yourself again and you did

  5. When you consider suicide

  6. When you want to stop remembering over and over but the thoughts always pop back up

  7. When you feel like you’re too old to be afraid of the dark

  8. When the progress you’ve made doesn’t feel like enough

  9. When doing the things you normally love doing feels like a chore

  10. When you confide in someone and they judge you

  11. When your family and friends don’t understand

  12. When you can’t sleep because of the thoughts rolling around in your head

  13. When you couldn’t prevent a panic attack

  14. When a large crowd is too much to handle

  15. When you need to be alone

  16. When the strategies your therapist gave you aren’t helping

  17. When you feel broken because you can’t seem to fix yourself

  18. When you can’t focus

  19. When you can’t remember how much time has passed or how long you’ve been disassociating

  20. When it feels like the only thing you have the mental capacity for is watching TV

It’s *OK*. The healing process is never linear. There are good days, and there are bad days, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t strong and it doesn’t mean you’re not making progress. So give yourself a break. Your next success with come soon enough.

Photographer: McKenna Hight

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