Mental well-being suits us all

09 June 2021 | Opinion

DR JOHN STEYTLER

Mental health is a subject which we are only starting to scratch the surface of in Namibia and it is not talked about a lot. In fact, not to single out Namibia, there are very few places in the world where healthy, open and frank discussions about mental health take place. However, in our country it seems more of a taboo subject than in many others, especially amongst men. Women talk and share their feelings and emotional state of mind a lot more freely. We men just tend to grunt and move on. Pushing your feelings down and not dealing with them is the worst way of approaching your mental well-being.

Even before Covid-19 became an issue; people faced stressful events, issues and socio-economic challenges every day. The pandemic has put mental health and awareness on the agenda for everyone. As humanity we were forced into living in a way that is not conducive to a positive mindset. The lack of touch, the lack of interaction, the lack of connection, the lack of daily routine has tipped the scales on our delicately balanced lives and mental health and not in a good way.

Mental health challenges are often spoken about as if they are something that others must deal with and suffer from. Certain people seem immune, but no one is, they are just better at hiding it. I personally at various stages in my life and career experienced spells of anxiety and even depression. The sooner that people realise this, the better. Many people put on a brave face, dismiss the problems that they have or try and make them go away through self-medication with alcohol, drugs, or pills. They make it look as if outwardly nothing is wrong. The inner turmoil that everyone faces should not be bottled up, which is something I have learned through personal experience.

But, how do you access help if you’ve never done so before, especially considering it is not something that is spoken about? Where do you turn? The internet offers some pointers, but the sheer volume of information leaves people feeling even more confused. A strong support structure in the form of friends and family really helps. Sometimes you need a professional, though. A psychologist who can assist in shaping those thoughts and redressing the mental health balance. I have seen a psychologist on more than one occasion when was challenged with difficult questions in life. I must admit that I was scared what people and my family would think if I saw a “shrink”. But at the end it was not a bad experience, and I am glad that I reached out for assistance.

It is not a process that has a beginning and an end; we must embrace the notion of mental wellness in much the same way as we have embraced the idea of working on our physical wellness.

During this time when mental health awareness is on the agenda, it is my hope and desire that we can start a discussion in Namibia, motivate people to examine their mental health and be healthy individuals mentally as well as physically. There should be no stigma surrounding seeking assistance. It can do wonders for your work and life balance and for your general well-being.

We must also be mindful of the challenges that people go through at work and in their home lives, and realise that not everyone is built the same. Be kind to each other and check in on your friends, family and co-workers. Make it a habit and lend a listening ear; a simple sign of support can mean so much. I am reminded daily that we do not know the battles that other people are going through. An encouraging word or gesture can do so much to uplift fellow Namibians during this time of Covid and economic hardship.

* Dr John Steytler wrote this in his personal capacity.

Similar News

 

EDITORIAL: Mitigate Covid with productive measures

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Opinion

We are reliably informed that plans are afoot to tighten Covid-19 regulations in the coming days, as the country undergoes its most deadly spell of...

A fact check: AstraZeneca vaccine still safe, really?

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Opinion

WERNER GERTZOn 11 March, during an official visit to President Geingob, the World Health Organisation (WHO) representative to Namibia, Dr Charles Sagoe-Moses, made the following...

The agreement that resolves nothing

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Opinion

YARUKEEKURO S. NDOROKAZE Dear Ambassador Beck,I am Yarukeekuro Steven Ndorokaze, a maturing male from Oruuua, Ovitoto Area of the Omatako Constituency in the Otjozondjupa Region,...

EDITORIAL: Swallow the ego

2 days ago - 10 June 2021 | Opinion

“This is the home of the brave. But there's so many people full of greed.” These are lyrics from the song ‘Divided We Fall’ by...

Racism and inequality

3 days ago - 09 June 2021 | Opinion

Racism, as has been said in various ways and at various times in this space in the newspaper, is abhorrent and those still finding themselves...

Mental well-being suits us all

3 days ago - 09 June 2021 | Opinion

DR JOHN STEYTLERMental health is a subject which we are only starting to scratch the surface of in Namibia and it is not talked about...

Leveraging technology for effective employee onboarding

3 days ago - 09 June 2021 | Opinion

JONAS D. ILEKAWhether you run a restaurant, IT start-up or a large corporation with various branches across the country, employee onboarding is by far one...

My Voice

4 days ago - 08 June 2021 | Opinion

Shindume Herman - Gabriel Taapopi Secondary SchoolI feel like there should be a balance between traditional and new media, because some of us live at...

EDITORIAL: Namibia too soft on controversial churches

4 days ago - 08 June 2021 | Opinion

Christianity is becoming the butt of every joke lately. Infiltrated by greedy celebrity wannabes who lie through their rotten teeth to steal from the poor,...

EDITORIAL

5 days ago - 07 June 2021 | Opinion

You don’t need to be an economy boffin to know that Namibia is in deep trouble when it comes to debts, jobs and the financial...

Latest News

Minimum wage discussions continue at...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Economics

The newly established Wage Commission is in Rundu to investigate the possibility of introducing a national minimum wage in the country.At a meeting held at...

Career partnerships – mentor, coach,...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Columns

Chaze NalisaA few weeks ago, I shared an article titled ‘Network is a Currency’. In today’s piece, I would like to draw attention to network...

Aiming to make a positive...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | People

Enzo AmueleBeatus Amadhila was recently appointed Powercom’s new chief executive officer, with effect from the start of June.“While I had to hit the ground running,...

2021’s breakout star

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Art and Entertainment

WINDHOEKMICHAEL KAYUNDEWith a track record that could impress anyone willing to pay attention, elia da vincii continues to develop himself on all levels. The song...

SA's rooibos tea on EU...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Business

Like champagne, roquefort and Kalamata olives, South Africa's world-famous rooibos tea has been added to a European Union (EU) list of protected agricultural products and...

Capricorn Group gives women’s cricket...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Sports

Staff Reporter Capricorn Group and its subsidiary Capricorn Asset Management, and Capricorn Private Wealth, sent off the Namibian national women’s cricket team – The Eagles...

Group sales manager shares his...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | People

Staff Reporter Ian Grassow is a proud Namibian, born in Walvis Bay, and is currently in the Group Sales division of Paratus Namibia.Ian has been...

When challenges become accomplishments

1 day - 11 June 2021 | People

Wetumwene Shikage Simone Mouton is a senior consultant at Alexander Forbes (AF) Financial Services She was born in a small village in the...

EDITORIAL: Mitigate Covid with productive...

1 day - 11 June 2021 | Opinion

We are reliably informed that plans are afoot to tighten Covid-19 regulations in the coming days, as the country undergoes its most deadly spell of...

Load More