Making space for mental health

 

WHO has named depression as one of today's leading causes of disability, with anxiety being the most common mental illness in the world, affecting 284 million people. Mental health is a subject that most of us would rather swipe past, and click next in hope for a more cheerful topic. But the cold fact is that mental illness is something no one can run from, at some point in our lives we will all be affected by it indirectly or directly. If we stop running and dare to look at it we might just find that there are plenty of  ways of tackling it. And lo and behold, fashion can be one of those ways! Here’s 5 ways fashion can help you deal with or prevent the blues:


Creating structure - When we feel down, our days can feel like they melt into one entangled knot of anxiety. And it doesn't help that anxiety affects our memory so that we are biased to remember only our past hardships. To tackle this and take back the power over our days it can help to create some structure. This can be done by planning out your outfits for the week. By preparing and picking out an outfit for each day you also get time to set an intention for the week to come. Having every outfit planned for the week will also take away from having to dreadfully stand in front of the wardrobe every morning with a sleepy mind and try to figure out what to wear.


Stepping out of your comfort zone - The idea of ‘fake it til you make it’ can come in handy when we are battling the blues, by challenging ourselves to wear something that might not fully align with our current mood, we might just knock ourselves into feeling something new, something different. Dress bold to feel bold!


Building connection - Disconnection is depression's secret helper. So by finding ways to connect to people and the world around you will help prevent you from falling into darkness. And what better way to connect with people than through something that sparks joy for you. It can be something as simple as challenging yourself to compliment people for their looks, or it can be to reach out and chat to someone about just how fashion helps you feel your best self. 


Letting loose - When we feel out of balance, we want to try to find ways of regaining control of our circumstances. However, sometimes this becomes just another way for our anxiety to selfishly steer the ship. By instead turning to embrace chaos creatively, we might just give ourselves a well needed break from the rigid rules of an anxious mind. And what better way to let loose than with fashion? Allowing for spontaneity and playfulness when picking an outfit can be a great way to get back on the road out of the ditch of depression.


Color boosting - The idea of color therapy is that different colors evoke different responses from every individual. People will often find specific colors therapeutic or stimulating. Experts believe that color can positively impact us in several ways and help with a host of conditions. Here’s some examples of how the different colours can affect our mood:


  • Red: This booster and energizer of a colour is a go-to if you are feeling tired or down. Red often helps people to feel more energized and excited.
  • Blue: This colour of the ocean and the sky can create a soothing and calming effect on your mood.
  • Green: The colour green can bring upon feelings of optimism and tranquility. This relaxing colour reminds us of nature and growth.
  • Yellow: Yellow is a warm colour which can contribute to feelings of cheerfulness and inspiration. 
  • Orange: Orange, much like yellow, can be used to elicit happy emotions from people. The bright warm color is also thought to be able to stimulate appetite and mental activity.

There are numerous ways to tackle mental struggles and illnesses. The most important thing of all is that we shed light upon it in one way or another, because this issue will only grow stronger in the shadows. If you find that fashion can help you beat the blues, then that is great! However, these tips are just thoughts and suggestions and not a substitute for professional help. Don’t hesitate to reach out if the load is too great, because no one can do it alone. Stay safe out there in space!