Updated: Sep 12
When to ask for help?
Whether you’re dealing with depression, anxiety, addiction, trauma, or any other mental health issue, there’s a common misconception that you have to wait until you reach rock bottom to seek out help.
That simply isn’t true. Chances are, you didn’t wake up one morning feeling incredibly anxious for the first time in your life. These are things that tend to build up over time. They come with warning signs, symptoms, and triggers. Unfortunately, ignoring those things can be easy – until it isn’t.
You never have to wait until you hit rock bottom to ask for help. There will be plenty of “warning signs” along the way. Sometimes, you’ll notice them yourself. Other times, someone in your life might point something out to you. Don’t ignore those signs or convince yourself things will get better over time. Often, they get worse without treatment.
Rock bottom should never be the standard you set for getting the help you need. So, what can you do to know when it’s the right time?
Recognize the Signs
No matter what type of mental struggles you’re facing, one of the best things you can do is to recognize some of the symptoms. Anxiety, for example, can cause fear and dread. It can create physical symptoms like a racing heart and sweating.
Depression often creates changes in eating and sleeping habits. You might withdraw from people you love and stop doing things that interest you.
If you’ve found yourself trying to suppress or ignore certain emotions, it’s important to note that they will catch up to you. Instead of avoiding your true feelings (and/or struggles), acknowledge them. Talk about them. The moment you’re worried about not feeling like yourself, it’s time to get help.
Look at How Your Life is Changing
If you’ve started to experience some of the symptoms listed above but feel like you can manage them, that’s understandable. That’s a choice many people make when they aren’t ready to discuss what they might be going through.
But, before hitting rock bottom, those symptoms will start to control your life. Your fear might make it impossible for you to go anywhere. Your depression could negatively impact your job, your relationships, or your family life.
If you’re starting to feel like things are getting out of control and you can’t take your thoughts captive anymore, talking to a mental health professional could be the answer.
Lean On Your Support System
Most people are more comfortable talking to friends and family members than a therapist. So, if you’re struggling, make a point to do that. Talk to someone you trust about what you’re dealing with. Take their advice into consideration. You might be surprised to hear them suggest going to therapy.
The people in your life who love you will always want you to be happy and healthy. If you're struggling with a mental condition, working with a professional is the best way to do that. While a support system of family and friends is helpful, you’ll need more guidance to truly take control of your life again. Whether you’re just starting to feel like something is “off” or you’ve been struggling for a while, it’s never a bad time to reach out to a professional for help.
If you’re interested in learning more or want to set up an appointment, feel free to contact me. You don’t have to go through any of this alone, and there is no shame in asking for help. In doing so, you’re taking the first step toward healthy, effective healing. So, you can start to enjoy your life while learning the skills necessary to keep your mental wellness in check.