Mental health is what the British quaintly term a ‘marmite’ topic. You either love it or you hate it; you either ‘get it’ or you avoid it at all costs.
Recently though, high profile suicides have made us aware that depression especially is very real, and very close to home.
As I engage with young (and not so young) South Africans I am often aware of great levels of anxiety, fears of failure and a frequent undercurrent of ‘imposter syndrome’ – the feeling of not being enough. Entrepreneurs that hold the great hopes and fears of family members on their shoulders; the pressure that one has to succeed and be seen to succeed with a show of material wealth, the perfect body and status…. perfection in an external, visible way.
Mental health awareness month is a call to attention for us all, and a reminder that our personal health starts within, with self-love and self-belief. We are at our most powerful when we are simply ourselves, standing in our own light.
We are at our most fragile when we try to be something else; someone that others will approve of. And the further we step away from our true self the more prone we are to feelings of inadequacy, despondency, and depression.
So, while speaking about mental health awareness, let us start by celebrating who we are with the daily mantra “I am me. I am enough”.
And as the unusually gentle editorial in this weeks’ Saturday paper says: “Most of all, let’s create a society that cares at a time when the world – and all the pressures associated with it, not least of all social media – seems hell-bent on pushing us in the opposite direction.”
With this in mind, we share Mabusang Malotane’s story of healing; mental and physical wellbeing tips for entrepreneurs, and advice for curbing our carbon footprint. We also get acquainted with the real situation about food insecurity in South Africa and review Brenè Brown’s book Rising Strong.