Being a Human is Hard: Advice for Protecting our Mental Health

There are endless memes on social media bemoaning the difficulty of “adulting.” Adulting” (navigating your day as a grown-up) is definitely challenging at times and I’m sure I am not the only one who longs for the time when the most complicated part of our day was choosing between white or chocolate milk at snack time.

As April comes to a close and we prepare to welcome a new month, I want to take a moment to acknowledge that May is Mental Health Awareness Month. Taking care of our minds, hearts, and bodies continues to be very important, especially since political injustices, racism, mass shootings, protests, and pandemic struggles show no signs of slowing down soon. This applies to all ages.

As someone who has spent two decades working within the family therapy and support field, much of my writing shares my experiences working with kids in therapeutic foster care. From my books and blog posts to major news platform articles and expert interviews, I am dedicated to sharing the tips needed to help all ages find peace and comfort inside and out.

While preparing for what I wanted to share during the upcoming Mental Health Awareness Month, I looked back at the handful of blog posts on this site that I had already written on the subject. On May 21, 2020, I had written a post called Minding Mental Health During This New Normal. This post was written while we were all new to the fear and uncertainty of COVID-19. Almost one year later, there is hope on the horizon as vaccines become widely available, but many are still struggling to cope with the exhaustion and fear of the last 12+ months. This has hit family units especially hard.

Social Distancing also means a physical connection is lost and this hits the smallest members of our communities especially hard as they are separated from the teachers and friends they love. During this time of economic, physical, and spiritual upheaval, kids need to understand their conflicted feelings more than ever. They need to know it’s OK to be mad or sad or scared or confused.

They need to know they are not alone, and that, this too shall pass.

My advice to parents, grandparents, caregivers, and educators at this moment in time is to live each day. Break the paralysis some of us have been feeling. Begin (or finish) the things you have always wanted to do.

Read Minding Mental Health During This New Normal (that is more relevant than ever) in its entirety HERE.

Not long after this popular post published, I felt compelled to write a similar article. Mental Health Matters: Navigating Personal Burnout During Uncertain Times was inspired by an interview I did for The EveryGirl and I was blown away by the positive response to my contribution to their article about Emotional Burnout. It was clear to me that there were many, many people of all ages in the world who were feeling alone and adrift in the world.

The Everygirl recognized this and I am excited about the quality of this article they shared with their more than 90,000 followers on Twitter. Please view the entire article here.

This piece inspired me to write Mental Health Matters: Navigating Personal Burnout During Uncertain Times for the MAWM blog and I am so grateful to be able to share information and guidance that helps us all be better at being people.

World Mental Health Day, like Mental Health Awareness Month, happens once a year and as much as I appreciated the global recognition of ending the stigma of mental health issues, mental health is something that needs attention 24/7 and 365 days a year.

As a family therapist, one of the many reoccurring issues I see is the lack of peace on a personal level. We can talk peace all we want, but if a person is all torn up inside and functioning on a continuous level of turmoil, it is virtually impossible to achieve peace on the outside.

With that in mind, I want you to think about your own peace of mind. How can you personally can feel more at peace? To find the answers and more, check out this past post on the MAWM blog called Finding Peace on a Personal Level HERE.

Mental Health Awareness Month provides a timely reminder that that mental health is essential and that those living with mental health issues are deserving of care, understanding, compassion, and pathways to hope, healing, recovery, and fulfillment. What will you do to encourage kind language about the importance of mental health?

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Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess Series Book One in this amazing FIVE BOOK series is HERE!

Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess: is a heartwarming story about family, role models, dreams, and discovering a determination for growth. This five-part diverse picture book series shines the spotlight on a little brown girl who loves musical theatre and never lets anything get in the way of her dreams. It seems that everyone else has an idea for who she should be, but in the end, she discovers that she is the one who gets to decide.

The story also reveals the very special family dynamic that Kayla shares with her mom- a hard-working woman who struggles with the guilt of not being as available for her young daughter as she would like. But as the story progresses, Kayla and her mom realize the impact of valuing the time they have together as well as the importance of seeing each other acknowledge (and pursue) their individual dreams. {ages 4 to 8}

GO HERE to order your copy of Kayla: A Modern-Day Princess by veteran author, Deedee Cummings, the Kayla: Modern Day Princess series is inspired by her own real-life princess and Broadway actress, Kayla Pecchioni.

About Deedee Cummings

As a therapist, attorney, author, and CEO of Make A Way Media, Deedee Cummings has a passion for making the world a better place. All 15 of Cummings’ diverse picture, poetry, and workbooks for kids reflect her professional knowledge and love of life. Colorful and vibrant, her children’s books are not only fun for kids and adults to read, they also work to teach coping skills, reinforce the universal message of love, encourage mindfulness, and facilitate inclusion for all. Cummings has spent more than two decades working within the family therapy and support field and much of her writing shares her experiences of working with kids in therapeutic foster care. As a result, her catalogs of published books for kids are filled with positive, hopeful messages. Using therapeutic techniques in her stories to teach coping skills, Cummings also strives to lessen the stigma that some people feel when it comes to receiving mental health assistance.
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