I like this article in the Independent newspaper about Tom Odell talking about mental health and loneliness (link at base of page). Although, I hate the Independent newspaper! But that is another story. Tom Odell is a successful British singer-songwriter. He’s got his own Wikipedia page which I suppose is a sign of status in human society. But his success does not wash away all the usual mental health issues that people and that he has. And he’s come clean on it and feels empowered by doing so. It is good to talk about loneliness and anxiety as it helps to alleviate it.
He tells us that he is “very passionate about talking about mental health”. He believes that mental health is a collective problem. That’s an interesting thought. I think that he means that people have to work together to make society more secure and friendly to help improve mood and alleviate mental health problems. In 2018 he said that he had a massive panic attack and was rushed to hospital. They thought that he’d suffered a stroke.
Never before has life been so convenient, and so connected with the internet, and yet felt so lonely and at times so trivial.
Yes, I can understand that feeling. That pointlessness of life. But we have to find our own purpose. We need purpose. It is an essential element in our lives. We should find it and focus on it. And be active in pursuing that purpose.
I believe that mental health issues are hidden away very often. It all happens behind closed doors when a person comes back from being outside with their public face. She or he will put on their public face to confront the world. And when they come home and shut the front door they might cry and tell themselves that they can’t cope, but they do.
Then, if they are lucky, they go to their cat companion and talk to her. They interact with their cat. They slow down and their cat makes them smile. Their mood lifts and they feel a little bit better. They make a coffee or tea and watch a bit of television and for a moment the world feels better.
Perhaps in an ironic way Covid has produced a useful spin-off which is a discussion about mental health. I’m told that the pandemic has resulted in many more people being anxious, which is entirely understandable. The world has been turned upside down. The long lockdowns with people stuck at home can only lead to bad thoughts. We need to be active and purposeful (I am being repetitive). We need to engage with nature. If you’re stuck at home, you can’t do that which is where a domestic cat companion comes in handy. Yes, I’m going to promote the domestic cat. Of course.
Yesterday, I looked at my cat and smiled. He made me smile because of his sweet look and his presence. He warmed my heart; he lifted my spirit. I thought how lucky I was to have him here. I live alone and I’m not immune to the black thoughts. It is difficult to calculate the contribution that my cat makes to my life but it is substantial.
Really, it doesn’t have to be a cat, a dog or another domestic animal will have the same effect. If you combine the companionship of an animal and if you walk in nature, you will probably be all right. We need to connect with nature and we need to bond with our fellow creatures with whom we share the planet. We are a whole. Don’t cut off parts of it. We come from nature and we return to nature when we die. Connect with it during your life.
Companion animals are healers. They poor balm on a troubled mind and I would highly recommend a relationship with an animal and nature. Walk in a beautiful park with a good friend and then go home to your cat. You’ll be able to cope better in my honest opinion.
If you want to beat anxiety and depression, use all the things that you can at your disposal. Use all the tricks and tips that you can. Bring them into your life. There is no easy fix. It is work. No quick fix drugs. Just clean solutions. And cats! They work, believe me.
Link to the Independent page (on MSN). I hate the Independent because it is so biased. They constantly lie and exaggerate about the Conservative government. I am not a great fan of the Conservatives but their reporting is horrible.
James Marriot writing for The Times has an interesting article today titled: The ties that bind us are breaking down. He says that Western societies are currently plagued with loneliness and a fundamental disconnect. He goes on to state that there has been a trend in Western culture towards society being more individualistic and disconnected. Part of the problem is increased mobility. He refers to a report which referenced an “epidemic of loneliness”. The report is the Onward survey. His comment on this trend supports what I have mentioned, I feel
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