Mental health in the 21st century
Recently I've been wondering why there's such a threat to our mental health these days and how it differs to when I was younger. Modern life has moved on so much and so quickly that some of the issues that we are facing now were just not present when I was in my 20's.
Of course, technology and mobile phones being one of the biggest contributors. But if you think of the very first mobile phone - yep, the brick - back in the 80's, look how that's progressed with apps and social media. It's really relentless.
I've heard people say that it feels like just being alive in this day and age is a threat to mental health.
It seems to me that young people are less resilient these days. This is something I often think about and ponder on why that might be. Research shows that more than 20% of the adult population take a psychiatric drug in any one year. I don't remember that being the case in the 80's. I don't know exactly but certainly this is an increase of over 300-500%.
I know what I'm about to write is controversial and it's not meant to be a judgement on anyone - but we live in a prescription epidemic and yet, mental illness has increased in number and severity. Those who know me know I'm not a fan of taking pills unless absolutely necessary. Yes, there will always be a time for taking prescriptions - but they need to be short-term. They are not always the solution to the problem.
Resilience is mostly build through challenges and hardship. But if we go back to childhood, this is the phase where resilience can also be build. Back in the 60's there was more child-led, technology-free play in childhood. We used our imagination. Play is ultra important during brain development. Play helps us make sense of our world. It can even create meaning. These days, a lot of technology is used in childhood right from the onset.
A lot of us are also disconnected from nature and live in toxic environments.
But if I had to summarise how to best protect from or deal with some mental health issues, then having the ability and knowledge how to self-regulate your emotions is probably one of the best methods I know. I will go further and add creativity here. If you can creatively think, then there will be many times in life when you'll be able to design a solution for yourself.
Let's take loneliness and lack of community as an example. With creative thinking you may start your own little group or know where to look and join some other group. You will be able to laterally think and come up with solutions out of the box.
And this is exactly what a Mapology Guide does. It helps you become more self-aware, regulate your emotions and instil creativity. These are invaluable skills to have throughout your life.
We created a START HERE bundle for those who struggle to know which Mapology Guide to buy or for those who are new to self-development. Think of it as a First Aid kit for the mind.