Mental health issues are becoming common these days. Even if I take my self they can affect us anytime. Eighteen months back I was living a happy life by the beach with my two friends, having a good boyfriend, good grades and in the final semester of my university. Everything was going perfect but what was the reason that made my life terrifying and resulted into mental illness. Keep reading to know that how I dealt with the depression.
All those memories have blurred now. After months of medication, therapy and pain i started to go back in my normal life. Last year in the month of April, this anxious girl booked a flight to London . Although I have travelled a lot with my family but spending summer in the Europe was my dream. I used to look for pinterest boards, blogs to know what I can see once I will be there.
I was taking my medicines along with the cognitive behavioral therapy and dialectical behavioral therapy courses. The progress I was making so far satisfied my doctors and they allowed me for this journey. I also promised that I will stay in touch with my psychologist through email and Skype sessions. I did not only carry my medicines but also copies of a letter from my psychologist explaining my mental health condition.
The enthusiasm and excitement that I was seeing in my self was just out of words. I was recovering and had the lust to see the other parts of the world and enjoy a living that I almost forgot in this time period. The girl who was afraid of so many things was running towards unknown destinations. The love of my family and friends combined with the excitement and self-belief helped me to sweep away the fears.
This is for all the people out there who struggle with the mental health and then fight until they are strong enough to book a flight for their self. Travelling can be considered as the healthiest form of addiction. It helps you to grow yourself and being the inspiring soul. Once you dig into it, it leaves you to crave for more. The wonderful travel tales that I have were made possible by controlling my mental health.
Travelling enable me to travel alone in a foreign country, forgetting about my fears and share my awesome experience with the whole world. It is about meeting strangers in a hostel room and turning them into your friends. It is also about sharing my mental health journey and surprising people. They get surprised that how an outgoing girl can be victim of depression and anxiety. I am sure that so many other people can also relate to my story.
You do not need to be ashamed. I fit into the category that is the victim of mental illness within the age group of 16-24. The highest incidents are found in this age group. According to research the people who belong to this age group are more likely to travel more. Most of us have the desire to travel around the world but also the necessity to take care of our mental health. I am an open proof that travelling around the world can help you to deal with anxiety and depression.
Visiting 18 countries is about talking in broken Spanish with a Peruvian lady selling fruit on the street, and to a taxi driver who saw the rise and fall of Nazi Germany. It is about a journey to places that you have never seen before, looking for the beauty in towns of Brazil and finding the happiness everywhere. It’s been horse-riding in Ecuador, sharing secrets with new foreign friends, drinking wine by a bonfire in Argentina and experiencing wonder under the Eiffel Tower, gulping pasta in Rome , sunbathing in Spain, and dancing in the streets during Rio’s Carnival.
But more than that it is looking everywhere to magical places like Machu Picchu or a small café in Colombia where I wrote this article. I am really grateful for the chance that I have got to explore, learn, read and believe. It is not about mental illness control you but to write about the entire struggle. I truly thank every person that helped me in this journey, especially my own self who did not give up.
I am not sure enough to say that everything becomes easy. Instagram may depict the carefree life of traveller enjoying the sunset and sunrises while living in various countries but you still face bad days. Your brain starts misbehaving and drags you towards the bad thoughts. Mostly these thoughts try to sabotage me but then I try to ignore these weird thoughts and move along the flow of my life. I try to concentrate on how I feel and I stay honest with myself. There is no doubt that bad things happen such as losing your bags, phone stolen by someone and much more but you have to deal with those situations. Travelling helps you to adapt new environment more rapidly than ever before. It helped me to challenge myself and sooth it through various techniques.
Facebook, WhatsApp, Skype and email have provided us the means to reach your support system. Travelling did not abandon my mental health because I strictly avoid alcohol, take medications properly and also maintain journal. Learning new things helps me to stay busy and feel the thrill. I look for hostel reviews to get the best place to sleep and meet new people, drawing myself to yoga classes, rooftop terrace and beautiful surroundings.
I accept that travel can be exhausting where you spend time in adventuring, dancing and sightseeing. I know that I need the freedom to have some nap, relax and recharge myself for the new day. I do not stick to specific plans because sometimes they change at the last moment. Now I have realized that why most of the travellers are kind and open minded. People often appreciate when you open up with them and share about your mental health journey.
During travels I have also met with many extraordinary people who are living extraordinary life. They motivated me to seek more from the places where I go. I have fallen back in love with my life again.