It can be a difficult decision to reach out for extra support when we’re struggling. Not only is there a lot of stigma attached to seeking support, but there’s also a lot of common myths and misconceptions too.
Like therapy is only for crazy people. Or psychologists will sit you on a leather couch and ask you about your childhood. The truth is, if people reached out for support in times of stress or when they first started to struggle, feelings of overwhelm and not coping could be dealt with much more quickly and effectively.
There’s no shame in getting extra support and it’s actually a really helpful resource when people need it the most. Despite this, people still make excuses not to speak to a professional and get the help they need.
The following are a few of the most common excuses – and reasons why you shouldn’t use them.
I can do it on my own.
- Maybe you can, maybe you can’t – is it really worth taking the risk? Wellbeing & Mental Health professionals are trained to help others with evidence-based strategies. They’re the experts. Even if you can do it on your own, getting some extra support might be just the thing that helps you get back on track more quickly and easily. If that’s the case, why wouldn’t you? What is the worst that could happen?
I don’t have time.
- You do have time. You have 24 hours in a day for the rest of your life. You just may need to reorganise your priorities for a little while, or enlist some extra support with other life tasks (kids, work etc) to free you up for what’s necessary.
I saw a mental health professional once and they didn’t help.
- Finding a good professional is like finding a good hairdresser or mechanic – you need one that you like and trust. Sometimes it can take time to connect with the right person for you. Don’t give up on the first go. If you have a good relationship with your GP, they can possibly offer insight into someone specifically they feel you’ll be happy with.
It’s a sign of weakness.
- Bulldust. It’s a sign of strength. And we’ll have that argument with anyone that tries to tell you otherwise.
If you feel like you may benefit from some additional support then here are some great places to start.
Work | Your workplace may have an EAP (Employee Assistance Program) similar to Mindstar in place, which provides mental health support.
GP | Chat to your GP about accessing some extra support. They can provide some great advice on options and help you make a plan to get you back on track.
If you, or someone you know needs crisis support, call Lifeline now on 13 11 14.
If life is in immediate danger call 000.