Thoughts From MY Cluttered Mind offers positive angles to the issue that faces those with mental illness. Living with Bipolar Disorder myself and being able to share my experiences with others, is the best way I know how to pay it forward. Life can be difficult, my goal is to bring a bit of hope to a place where many feel there is none.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A is for Awe - A to Z Blog Challenge

The world is full of moments that leave us breathless and in awe of everything around us.  I walk the beaches of Florida, watching the waves crash, the sunrise and I stand in awe of the majesty of it all.  Yet, as I walk the shoreline my mind wanders to not so much the beauty of what is around me, but what my brain has challenged me with the awesome doctors who have helped me.

There was a time when I would not have been able to enjoy the scenery, mental illness is my nemesis, the thing that takes joy from me and yet leaves me in awe all at the same time.  It is the doctors that amaze me most, while I have had my share of questionable characters my current psychiatrist has saved my life and continues to do so each day with his knowledge and continued research on the best ways to treat those with these illnesses, especially with my extensive list of medications I can’t take due to side effects. 

This may seem minor to most, being amazed by a doctor’s ability is not something that is thought of often, but for me it is a daily occurrence.  And while medication does help, there is more to this than meets the eye.  The news blames many things on those with mental illness and the fact that they have not taken their medication, but there is more to it.  Medication is not the only way to treat these illnesses. 

In the journal Emotion it is mentioned that positive emotions like awe can reduce depression, and give us an connection and sense of meaning in our lives.  There are three main ways to find awe in our lives each day. 

First think of a special time in your life, where were you? Who were you with? What did if feel like?  Being able to reminisce about these moments helps us connect with the good things in our life.

Second like the beginning of my post says, seek out the beauty that is all around us.  A nature in the park or through the woods can calm the mind and inspire you and make you feel better. 

Third find the awesome in those around you, spend time with those inspire you and you are able to share special moments with, such as winning a competition. 

I came up with the idea for this post after I read an article on Psychcentral.com and knew it would be the perfect post to begin the challenge with.  After all, what we will accomplish in the next month to many will nothing short of awesome.