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Men’s mental health is one of the most talked about but cryptic subjects in the field. Many claims to be change advocates while unknowingly falling for stereotypes that preserve the status quo. It’s easy to overcomplicate the issue when in reality, the emotions men face have been eminent in civilization for generations. Moreover, it’s difficult for them to recognize a problem due to age-old pressure to maintain a hard exterior.
For most, it boils down to a simple feeling; that of being unfulfilled. Whether it’s recurring stress at the expense of happiness at work or constant self-sabotage and negative self-talk, the problem has to be addressed at the root. One of those helping men begin to unravel the tangled knot of their mental health is Tim Perreira. While he gets ready for the launch of his men’s service PER Wellness towards the end of this year, he has provided three steps for guys to prepare now to fulfill their mental health hopes.
Grow your awareness
To many newcomers in the mental health space, it may seem like a given. But be aware that there may be an issue in the first place can be one of the most challenging steps to betterment, especially for men. PER’s founder prefers to use worksheets to assist men in understanding what’s going on up top.
“People can only do the best they can with the level of awareness they have, so they must begin expanding that. A professional can help men challenge their way of thinking to help them identify and understand the issue.”
This first step may seem straightforward, but subconscious mental obstacles may lie in the way of a man’s complete awareness of their mental health. Sensibilities they may previously have recognized as personality traits or social necessities may, in reality, be contributing to a negative state of mind, which then risks long-term problems. Once awareness has been built, men can start finding the answers that may previously have eluded them.
‘Taking inventory’ is one way to describe it, but in simple terms, it just means taking a breather. It’s a follow-on from raising awareness that allows men room to consider their current conditions before they jump in guns blazing in an attempt to right them. Regardless of the characterization, it can be integral to understanding the desired outcome and how to reach it.
“Taking inventory is all about keeping track of how you feel when you change certain inputs,” Perreira explained. “What you’re listening to, how late you’re staying up, if you’re drinking alcohol, what you’re eating, and who you’re talking to are all valuable metrics. After tapping into that, guys already start to see what might be going wrong and where opportunities are.”
The taking inventory step could help men pinpoint the tendencies already alluded to. Self-sabotage and substance abuse, for example, may previously have been passed off as cynical personality traits or fun activities with friends. Structured consultation with a professional could reveal a more uncomfortable truth and help motivate change.
Clear your vision
Vision is often used as an aspirational, entrepreneurial word. It exerts pressure on men to become generational talents or public figures. The vision referred to here is very different. Besides conventional career ambitions, men should develop clarity regarding their mental health goals. Experts believe these epiphanies should not only be realized in the mind but also vividly recorded for future reference.
“I think there’s a lot of power in articulating thoughts onto paper,” Perreira said. “People assume their thoughts make sense, but they are untethered to anything, and the individual is filling in the gaps themselves. Ask yourself questions about what you want in life, what your perfect week would look like, and who you want to spend time with. Then, get creative and write the answers down on paper.”
Losing goals is often considered the salient step in someone’s mental health journey. But aims are usually the most straightforward aspects to record. The inconvenient but essential details are just as necessary to reverse a deteriorating mindset. For men, this means breaking down the blockade on mental health awareness either themself or with the help of a professional.