Get Rid of Your Edit Button
Your mental well-being suffers when you spend energy trying to present a different version—a sanitized version—of yourself to others or yourself for the sake of attachment
By Quentin Steen, Representative/BC Member Education Coordinator
Denying your authentic self and choosing only the parts (or a particular version of yourself) you believe or have been told are acceptable to others to gain their approval or avoid uncomfortable conversations is exhausting.
When you choose attachment over authenticity, you lose, and the price you pay directly correlates to your mental well-being. You simply cannot claim to be well in your mental space when you spend energy denying your reality to keep the peace.
When you do so, the peace you seek is no more than a cease-fire at best. Meanwhile, the allusion of peace on the outside gives way to storm fronts—emotional hurricanes—on the inside.
When you give awareness to your emotions and feelings, you allow them to be a deep, rich part of you. Feelings are not your enemy. They are your friend.
Sit with that for a second. . . .
Your feelings point to parts of you trying to tell you something, things that need to be attended to, not ignored. There is an opportunity for you in these moments to respond with empathy instead of judgment and gratitude instead of contempt.
Express gratitude for the presence of feelings and the lessons they want to teach you about your authentic self without hitting the edit button. In these moments, think about what you’re thinking and how you’re feeling.
Your mental well-being suffers when you spend energy trying to present a different version—a sanitized version—of yourself to others or yourself for the sake of attachment.
Choosing to work with who you really are will reshape you into a healthier version of yourself. Things shift when you carve out the meditative time—and I’m not talking about meditation necessarily but a quiet, reflective, mindful space—to process difficult emotions. You give conscious freedom to explore if this is an obstacle to outmuscle or an opportunity to learn from.
So, get rid of your edit button or, at the very least, learn when it doesn’t serve you.
Quentin Steen is a certified mental health first aid instructor for the Mental Health Commission of Canada.
Get your BRAIN right and your MIND will follow!
4 Mental Health Resources to Help You
- If you or someone you know is struggling with a mental health issue, CLAC has a number of resources and interactive tools available to help you at My Health and Wellness.
- Stronger Minds features videos and quick reads from mental health experts, activities to help you gain resilience, and ask-an-expert videos in response to questions.
- WellCan offers free well-being resources to help Canadians develop coping strategies and build resilience to help deal with uncertainty, mental health, and substance abuse concerns.
- Wellness Together Canada: Mental Health and Substance Use Support provides free online resources, tools, apps, and connections to trained volunteers and qualified mental health professionals.