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The High Price of Neglecting Mental Health...

por Robinson Kanes, em 29.06.20


Créditos: Sydney Sims em Unsplash


Hoje partilho em inglês um texto de uma pessoa especial... Mantenho o inglês, perdoem os que não puderem ler, todavia podem sempre recorrer ao "google translate" ou ao DeepL Translate. Não fica a 100%, mas é uma boa ajuda. Também pode ser lido aqui.


Mental Health is not a trend in our superheroes world. And we might pay a high price for that in the near future.

Many years ago, one of my colleagues would say that we were living in a world of emotional illiteracy, meaning that people would talk a lot about several topics in their lives but would never touch the subject of emotions, let alone working on them. I believe her statement still holds true.


In the last decade, during my work in private Coaching and Human Resources Consulting in several companies, I have been observing that people are in general more aware of the importance of mental health, understanding that our well-being is not only defined by the physical aspect of health but also by the psychological, emotional and social components of our human existence. Nevertheless, it is still quite unusual to see programs that promote all or some of these aspects in the workplace, for example. From my experience and work in several big organizations, many of them in a multinational environment, employees may get more perks and benefits than they used to, but few of them are related to mental health promotion.


Many of my clients in Cognitive Behavioral Coaching come from organizations like these ones, while others come from a different working environment, such as small or medium businesses. There is a common denominator in all of them though: they all search for a safe setting to discuss their emotions in certain aspects of life, many times related to work and a lack of purpose in what they do. This holds true also for clients who come to me to discuss topics related to their relationships (romantic or others), in which is clear that people are in general affraid of being judged or criticized if they talk about what they really think, feel and want. By providing them a safe and non-judgemental space to discuss these aspects of their lives, we, as professionals, are already seeing them paving half of the way.


It seems there is no space for being truly human in our current superheroes world. Social media and everything around us show us a created and very polished version of what human experiences are, making many people feel inadequate just because they can’t afford to take a picture in a Maldives’ scenario. With all the focus on the external part of life, our internal resources have less and less margin to be properly developed, which, in turn, can cause more space for not dealing with emotions in a more adequate and adaptive way.


According to the Gallup 2019 Global Emotions Report — a study of people’s positive and negative daily experiences based on more than 151,000 interviews with adults in over 140 countries in 2018, “even as the U.S. economy was growing, more Americans were stressed, angry and worried”, for example (in alone can give us an idea about how economic indicators are not the only ones we need to take in consideration when analyzing data related to human development. And also that we might in fact be underrating the importance of stress, angry or worry as indicators of a decrease in our general well-being.


What we are seeing already with the coronavirus outbreak is that, while we are all paying full attention to treatments, possible vaccines or containment measures to control the virus, we are not as concerned with the consequences of this crisis in mental health — anxiety, stress levels, depression or other indicators.


The price of not looking at all aspects of mental health is indeed high. If we don’t take care of those who might be suffering in silence, opening up the lines of communication and spreading a culture of an emotional healthier society, consequences can be severe to entire humanity. Therefore, we might need to rethink the way we are treating and following up on those who are now unemployed, facing financial constraints, trying to overcome serious interpersonal relationships issues, dealing with divorce or any other challenging time in their lives. Only then, with a model that can include everyone who needs a space to speak, share and feel safe, we can truly say we are becoming more human and evolving as a civilization.


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6 comentários

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Maria Araújo a 29.06.2020

A saúde mental é demasiado importante para que a economia e a sociedade evoluam.
Mas a democracia trouxe o poder e o dinheiro que, aparentemente, parecem trazer felicidade e tranquilidade, exigem, contudo, mais tempo no trabalho,mais esforço, mais conhecimento,mais de tudo, mais da pessoa.
E a pessoa não tem como "fugir", são horas de mais para salário precário, uma vida precária, um emprego que exige levantar cedo,apanhar um, ou mais, transportes, e no final do dia o regresso a casa e ter o segundo trabalho que é cuidar da casa,dos filhos,preparar a marmita para o dia seguinte.
Também porque mesma sociedade quer chegar longe, quer ter mais, sonha, e com todo o
direito, ter uma casa melhor, dar um futuro melhor aos filhos, ter uma vida mais confortável
Tudo isto tem os seus " custos": o stress, a preocupação, o medo.
O Coronavírus veio fragilizar mais a vida das pessoas.
O ideal seria mesmo isto:
" Only then, with a model that can include everyone who needs a space to speak, share and feel safe, we can truly say we are becoming more human and evolving as a civilization."

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Robinson Kanes a 29.06.2020

Muito obrigado pelo comentário. Quem escreveu este artigo também o pode comentar, pelo que, avanço eu, pelo menos para já :-)
Para mim, a saúde mental ainda continua a ser vista no caixote do lixo dos hospitais, por exemplo... E acredite que mesmo entre profissionais a coisa treme, que o digam os alunos de psicologia quando estagiavam na psiquiatria dos HUC. Depois temos o facto de existirem muitos formados em psicologia mas poucos psicólogos, e já nem falo da OPP que, enfim...

Em relação à sociedade do mais e do ter: enquanto nesse mais e ter não se contemplar a saúde mental e outras tantas coisas, por certo não vamos lá. Dinheiro ajuda, ter ajuda, mas falta o essencial e não vai lá com meia-dúzia de dias no Butão.

Em relação aos custos de ter uma vida com tudo... São escolhas, menos é mais, já dizia o outro :-)
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Maria Araújo a 29.06.2020

Vou enviar este texto para os meus familiares e amigos.
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Robinson Kanes a 29.06.2020

Obrigado, Maria. Este texto, apesar de estar em inglês foi escrito por um "português" que vivem em Portugal e que não baixou os braços, mesmo quando a cedência ao "status quo" seria o caminho mais fácil... ;-)
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cheia a 29.06.2020

" menos é mais"
Sem saúde não temos nada.

Um abraço


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