11 Ways To Heal Yourself When You Can’t Access Mental Health Support
When we think of mental health support, we think of counseling or therapy but these services may not be accessible to many. Let’s face it, not everyone can afford therapy as many online or even offline services can be expensive, without insurance.
All counseling sessions aim at teaching you the tools you need to navigate the challenges in your life. Therapy is an ongoing process and no one can predict when the effects of therapy will be experienced. And in any case, most of the learning must be practiced out of therapy. The effects of therapy can only show when you apply what you’ve learned in therapy to real life.
Unfortunately, therapy isn’t accessible to everyone. And while the ways mentioned in this blog are not a replacement for mental health counseling, these ways can still help you heal yourself without therapy.
Let’s take a look at these ways!
How to Heal Yourself Without Therapy?
Most of our mental and emotional health struggles come when we face a traumatic or challenging situation in our life. These distressing and traumatic experiences can leave us reeling.
While some people can easily heal without therapy or needing any professional help, others might still struggle. Why do coping and healing from challenges come easily to many? Well, because they have the strategies in place to help them when trauma occurs.
When we’re unable to properly heal or cope with the traumatic feelings, the distress turns internal and when the distress is internalized, difficult emotions and feelings get stuck inside without any way to escape.
With expensive and sometimes inaccessible therapy and counseling, we might not be able to care for our mental health the way we deserve.
With these 11 techniques, you can heal yourself without therapy and take care of your mental health:
1. Identify Where You’re Stuck
Emotions and feelings are what drive us to act every day and these same emotions and feelings are the ones that can make us feel trapped. The first thing you can do is to identify where you’re stuck. What caused you to feel this way? What emotion are you feeling (or not feeling)? Once you do this, you can carry on with the next step.
2. Re-evaluate Your Thoughts
Negative thoughts are a part of our thinking just as positive thoughts can be. When you feel you’re drowning in negative thoughts, re-evaluate where these thoughts are coming from. Did something trigger them? If yes, what was it and how can you eliminate the trigger? Understanding your thought pattern can help you understand how to change them.
3. Identify Your Coping Mechanism
How you cope with your challenges is also important to note when you’re getting help without therapy. Ask yourself, “Is my coping mechanism helping me?” If your coping mechanisms are worsening your mental health, then it can be problematic. Try to find healthy coping mechanisms that can help you cope with your challenges or can help you control your anxiety.
4. Understand Your Challenges
Another way to heal yourself without therapy is to understand your challenges, your trauma, your distress, and how it’s affecting your life. Educate yourself about how healing works and how self-help can help. Understand how your distress is affecting you. This can easily be achieved via self-help books, podcasts, or even TED Talks.
5. Vent Out Your Feelings
When you’re in therapy, one of the benefits is regular check-ins with your therapist and your progress. Without therapy, how can you keep track of your progress? Simple, by journaling. Every week or fortnightly, try to vent out your feelings in a journal. Make sure the focus is on you and where you need to work more.
6. Be Kinder To Yourself
Healing isn’t an easy process and requires a lot of patience, love, and care. One of the most important parts of taking care of yourself and healing yourself without therapy is to be kind and self-compassionate. It’s easy to be critical of oneself but don’t forget to be kind and forgiving when you make mistakes.
7. Change Your Inner Dialogue
Our inner voice can be loud when we least expect it (or want it to be) but that’s another challenge you can overcome. Our inner voice can be very critical and mean at times and this critical inner dialogue can make us feel like a failure. Just changing the way you talk to yourself in difficult times can help make a huge difference.
8. Try Meditation
Meditation is an amazing way to build self-awareness and keep yourself focused on your healing. When you find yourself feeling anxious or overwhelmed, meditation can help you calm your mind and center your thoughts. When your thoughts are centered, it becomes easier to focus on the problem and how to eliminate it.
9. Reach Out To A Community
Many people may feel like sharing their problems with their family and friends is productive but not all. Some people may find that sharing their trauma or distress with their loved ones ends up being biased. To keep things (and solutions) fair, try to join a therapeutic community or a support group. There, you can find others with similar experiences.
10. Take Your Care Into Your Hands
You must be thinking that not being able to access therapy is bad but instead of a hindrance, think about this self-help way as taking your care into your hands. Taking charge of one’s mental health can be empowering because instead of putting your vulnerable self in someone else’s care, you’re taking charge. Take this as an opportunity to grow your skills.
11. With One Negative, Find One Positive
Negative thoughts can be hard to counter but here’s a trick that I learned in therapy. When you think one negative thought, think one positive thought. For example, if you’re thinking, “All I could do today was get out of bed.” counter this thought with, “I got out of bed, that’s progress.”
Negative and positive are two sides of the same coin, just like yin and yang. With every negative, you’ll find something positive. All you need to do is focus on the positive more than the negative.
Your Mental Health Is Important…
Taking charge of your mental health can be a tough job but at the same time, it can be quite empowering. You may realize that you’re more comfortable working with a therapist than working on your own and that’s not a bad thing.
To be honest, we can all agree that sometimes a little external support can help us climb that rock that’s holding us back.
If you need professional help, it’s OK. You can always find help with us at firstname.lastname@example.org or with BetterHelp’s professional support. Just sign up below to connect with trained and experienced mental health professionals.
Keep in mind that these ways to heal yourself without therapy are not a substitute for professional help but can help you cope and heal yourself. Hopefully, with this article, you were able to find some ideas to help you cope the next time you feel anxious, stressed, or overwhelmed.
Remember, you are not alone in your fight. Reach out for help when you need it. We’re here to help you!