Getting help isn’t a sign of failure, it’s quite the opposite.
Life can be overwhelming. Hell, even scrolling through our timelines can be overwhelming (climate grief anyone?). Sometimes daily gratitude lists, personal development tasks and that Spin class you really love when it’s over just don’t cut it.
We can’t always let faith and process be the bridge we use to overcome our darkest thoughts. And that’s okay.
On R U OK? Day and every day in between, it’s important to remember the strength which lies in seeking and accepting help.
Strength isn’t always cool composure and a stiff demeanour. Failure isn’t defined by self-esteem and the number of times life knocked you down. Being tired does not mean you are lazy.
Whether we’re currently doing okay or not, the below quotes on the importance of self care are definitely worth a read.
“My brain and my heart are really important to me, I don’t know why I wouldn’t seek help to have those things be as healthy as my teeth. I go to the dentist. So why wouldn’t I go to a shrink?”
— Kerry Washington
“I have never been remotely ashamed of having been depressed. Never. What’s there to be ashamed of? I went through a really tough time and I am quite proud that I got out of that.”
“…but for some reason, there was something intangible dragging me down. Luckily, thanks to my mum, I knew that help was out there—and to seek it without shame.”
“We shouldn’t treat mental health conditions any differently. Instead, we should make it clear that getting help isn’t a sign of weakness — it’s a sign of strength — and we should ensure that people can get the treatment they need.”
– Michelle Obama
“It’s ok not to be. Well done for just getting through the damn day. Nothing wrong or embarrassing about getting help either.”
“Have faith that on the other side of your pain is something good.”
“[We need to take] the stigma away from everything suicide and [make] it actually acceptable for people to talk about and look for help and not feel ashamed of themselves for it.”
“For me to crawl out of that and to accomplish what I’ve accomplished with the show and with my brand and with my production company, and to succeed after all that … [It] makes me realise that no matter how dark something gets, and no matter how bad something gets, that there’s always a possibility of good coming from it.”
“The only real shame is on us for not being willing to speak openly. For continuing to deny that mental health is related to our overall health. We need to start talking, and we need to start now.”
“I have better tools now to get through what seem like the impossible times, and most importantly, I know my worth.”
“Your mental health should be your priority. Don’t forget that.”
“But going through my all-time low, you know, kind of seeing where I was and then seeing what I have now, I’m so thankful for my family and friends around me who were able to help me and were able to communicate with me.”
“If you were bad yesterday, that doesn’t mean you have to be bad the following day. You can always improve, and you can always start a new journey.”
“You should think of the word ‘depressed’ as ‘deep rest.’ Your body needs to be depressed. It needs deep rest from the character that you’ve been trying to play.”
“There is no need to suffer silently and there is no shame in seeking help.”
“A few months ago I felt really low, really sad – depressed for no reason. Im a very positive person, and I’ve always been glass half-full. So it was like someone switched a flip in me.”
“People still associate therapy with being crazy. But I think you’re crazy if you won’t consider going to get help for yourself — to learn the tools to deal with the problems in your life.”
“I have gained so much by facing adversity. I had a shrink who said, ‘Buzz, you are so lucky that you had to change, to grow. You are a better person now.’”
“I don’t think you should keep it [depression] quiet… I’m not embarrassed or ashamed about what happened. I view it as an injury. If I’d have pulled a thigh muscle, it wouldn’t even be a question.”
If you are dealing with anxiety or depression and you need some guidance, please call Lifeline on 13 11 14, or the Suicide Call Back Service on 1300 659 467. If you are in immediate danger, call 000.
If you know someone who you think might need support, check out this guide for starting a conversation.