Nobody chooses to get a mental illness, but that doesn’t mean your choices don’t contribute to getting one.
I was really excited when I found out that my behaviors were exacerbating and contributing to my anxiety disorders because that meant I could do something about those illnesses: I could eliminate the behaviors that were prolonging them. But when I talk about that, I often get people telling me they “don’t want to feel responsible,” or “don’t want to blame themselves,” which was never the point I wanted to make. The past is irrelevant. Blame and responsibility are irrelevant. The point I want to make is this: Our actions affect our brains and that’s awesome because we can do lots of things to set ourselves up for great mental health in the future! Change has to focus on the future.
You can’t rely solely on a behavioral approach to resolving your mental health issues, but you also can’t rely solely on a medicine or supplement-based approach. Many factors, inside of you and outside of you, contributed to getting you to where you are. If you want to move on from where you are, that’s also going to require changes in many areas of your life, some external, and some internal.
And I think that’s fantastic.
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