Barriers to Mental Health



This is an academic paper written for my Fall 2018 English 111 class. This is my work and is not to be duplicated. It is uploaded to the an academic registry but has not been published except for in this blog. Enjoy!

Barriers to Mental Health

On and off throughout Maggie’s childhood, she struggled with feeling depressed and unmotivated. Often when she was feeling like this her parent would tell her to cheer up or shake it off. Maggie never felt comfortable talking to her parents about what she was experiencing because they consistently made derogatory remarks about people with mental health problems. She was scared that they would start calling her crazy or say she needed to be “locked up in a looney bin” too.

Maggie’s parents divorced when she was 13 years old, and she experienced her first suicidal thoughts. Her depression had worsened when she had to move over 1,000 miles away from the place she grew up. To cope with the weighty feelings of depression Maggie developed unhealthy coping strategies. She started drinking alcohol with her friends, binge eating, and having under age sex with much older boys. These behaviors intensified in college where Maggie’s drinking led her to being arrested several times for alcohol related offenses. Not only did Maggie’s behavior worsen, her suicidal thoughts increased as well.

Maggie felt ashamed about her depression and inability to manage it. She was afraid of what others might say if they found out. Because of this shame Maggie didn’t seek help from a mental health provider but from her primary care provider instead. After confirming Maggie was indeed experiencing depression, her primary care provider prescribed her depression medications and sent Maggie on her way. Within a week of starting this medication Maggie experienced an increase in her suicidal thoughts, driving her dangerously close to completing suicide one night. The next day, Maggie visited her primary care provider where she was told the “side effects” were all in her head. The only option she was given was to go back off the medication with no guidance on other options.

Throughout the next five years Maggie coped with her depression the best ways she knew how, by overeating and overdrinking. She stopped using sex to cope when she got married. In 2013 Maggie woke up hung over, after a particularly rough night of drinking, and decided enough was enough. She made the decision to end her life by overdose. Maggie could no longer live with her depressive thoughts anymore. She believed that the world would be better off without her, her family would be better off without her, and that she was just a burden on those around her. Fortunately for Maggie, her husband intervened before she could complete her suicide and encouraged her to seek out mental health treatment. Over the next five-years, Maggie received therapy that allowed her to heal from her past and taught her the tools she needed to manage her depression without relying on her unhealthy coping tactics. Today Maggie can thrive without depression controlling her life.

Stories like Maggie’s are not unusual. According to Sickel, “Nearly half of American adults are likely to experience a mental disorder during their lifetime” (1). Unfortunately, unlike Maggie, many of those people will not receive treatment for their mental health disorders. Among the reasons people do not receive proper mental health treatment are: cost, mental health stigma, prescriptions from a primary care provider, lack of mental health knowledge, no access to treatment, and belief that non-professional resources are just as good. These fall into three main categories: acceptability, affordability, and accessibility. Mental health disorders, if left untreated, not only affect the person experiencing them but society as well. It is important that mental health be treated just as important as physical health or the mental health crises will continue to progress and affect everyone.

In “Perceived Barriers to Mental Health Treatment among Individuals with a Past-Year Disorder Onset: Findings from a Canadian Population Health Survey,” Fikretoglu and Liu argue that “few individuals with a new-onset mental disorder access treatment in a timely manner.” (739). This article focuses on their study, which identifies the perceived barriers to accessing treatment in a timely manner. Fikretoglu and Liu used the Canadian Community Health Survey to determine the findings of their study. Their conclusion was that acceptability barriers, how acceptable seeking treatment is, were the most prevalent barriers of all. In the article Fikretoglu and Liu share some limitations that their study had, like sample size and the phrasing of each barrier in the survey. The honesty and objectivity in reporting the findings of their study makes the article accurate. The twenty-nine resources cited at the end of the article validates its contents. If someone wanted to understand the different types of barriers that prevents people from seeking out mental health treatment, this article would be very useful.

Acceptability, or mental health stigma, is the negative perceived beliefs, or attitudes, around mental health. In Maggie’s story she experienced stigma when she heard her parents talking about people being “crazy” or needing to be put in the “looney bin.” Mental health stigma can be noted in the way society talks about mental health and those with mental illness. This can cause those experiencing mental health disorders to feel ashamed or perceive their struggles as unacceptable to those around them. The higher the perceived mental health stigma, the less likely someone is to seek out mental health treatment, no matter how severe their mental health struggles may be. Often this is because they have already witnessed the consequences of mental health stigma like not getting hired for a job, getting fired from a job, deteriorating relationships with friends/family members, being treated differently by medical professionals, and not being able to sustain romantic relationships. It can be difficult for someone to seek treatment if they fear for their job, relationships, and reputation.  Fikretogia and Liu found availability barriers to be second in barriers after acceptability barriers. Acceptability barriers were reported “four times as often as availability barriers.” (743)

Availability barriers are barriers that involve the availability of timely mental health treatment. This can include long wait times to see a mental health professional, a mental health professional not being available in the surrounding area, and a mental health professional that accepts insurance not accepting new patients. In the study conducted by Moskos et al., parents who sought out treatment reported access to services as one of the barriers (184). Wait times for mental health treatment can be up to six months in some cases. These wait times are one of the reasons more people are seeking out mental health treatment from their primary care providers instead of a mental health professional. However, that does not necessarily mean people are receiving quality care from their primary care providers. According to Mark Olfson, “Research … has confirmed that the quality of mental health care tends to be lower medical settings than in specialty settings” (561). Another problem that arises when primary care providers are the ones responsible for mental health treatment is that they cannot provide mental health therapy and can only prescribe medications. Medications are not always necessary in the treatment of mental health disorders, but therapy often is. Like in Maggie’s case, primary care providers sometimes prescribe medication without any monitoring or guidance on other mental health treatments. Availability barriers are not the only barriers that encourage people to seek out their primary care physician, accessibility barriers do as well.

Accessibility barriers are all things that can prevent someone from being able to access a mental health professional when there is one available. These include: cost of treatment, child care, lack of knowledge about how to locate a mental health professional, cost of transportation, and no time. Cost of mental health therapy fluctuates depending on the location and expertise of a therapist. If someone is fortunate enough to have health insurance, their policy may only cover part of mental health treatment while some policies don’t cover any of it. In the study conducted by Jones et al., “affordability was the top reason for unmet needs, cited by 39% of (their) patients” (431). People most likely to be affected by mental health barriers are in a lower socioeconomic status. This makes them less likely to have access to transportation or be able to afford to miss work. Sometimes child care can prevent a parent from accessing mental health services even if they can afford it or have transportation. Children are not often welcome in a therapy session. Some parents don’t have another person they can trust to watch their children, or cannot afford to have someone watch their children, during sessions. According to Fikretoglu and Liu, “having one more child aged 6-11 years old in the household was associated with almost a 3 times increased likelihood of perceiving an accessibility barrier” (742). Even if someone can afford or attend mental health sessions, he/she may not know how. Due to the lack of education or the miseducation around mental health some people do not know how or when to access mental health services. This affects their ability to access mental health treatments.

A major shift needs to occur in the medical setting and in society in order to decrease barriers to mental health treatment. Better, more in-depth, education around mental health disorders and treatment has been proven to make major shifts in people receiving proper mental health treatment. Sharp et al. conveys in their study that even something like a mental health education program in a classroom setting can shift people’s perceptions.

The results of this study suggest that a mental health education program that focuses on modifying negative or inaccurate opinions about mental illness, low treatment expectations, and lack of knowledge regarding treatment options may improve attitudes toward seeking professional psychological help, as well as modify some opinions about mental illness (Sharp, Hargrove, Johnson & Deal, 436).

Mental illness is pervasive in society today. Most people will either experience mental illness themselves or knows someone who will. Without properly educating our policy makers, medical professionals, and society, people will continue to experience unmet mental health needs.

Policy makers are an important piece in shifting the perceptions and beliefs around mental health care. They can create laws and policies that make it easier to access mental health care, as well as make it harder to be discriminate because of mental illness. According to Sickel, “Working individuals having a mental illness may experience increased workplace discrimination or pressure due to their health status” (4). Policies preventing mental health discrimination in the work place are necessary throughout the United States, not just in “some states.” Even if discrimination was not an issue it is important that policies require work place flexibility, so employees can access their mental health treatments without the fear of losing their job or income. Mandatory mental health training for all employees, as well as those in charge, could aid in not only understanding those policies but understanding the importance of mental health treatment. Finally, policy makers must be educated so they see the value in mandatory mental health treatment coverage for every health insurance policy. This would only be a start because we must also improve the availability of mental health treatment as well.

According to Jones, Lebrun-Harris, Sripipatana, and Ngo-Metzger, “more than 40% of patients with mental health problems seek care in the primary care setting” (426). Since the primary care setting is often the first-place people seek mental health treatment it is important that the medical community have more mental health information and training. Due to the shortage of mental health professionals in some areas, and long wait times, primary care providers may need to treat patients until they can be seen by a mental health professional. According Olfson, the best model for how such treatment can be implemented is the integrative care model (569). This model consists of collaboration between primary care providers and mental health professionals, but it also includes more mental health education on the primary care level. This would mean that primary care providers would need to work together with mental health professionals to create a viable treatment plan for their patients. This plan may or may not include prescription medication and may or may not include mental health therapy. What the treatment plan includes will be dependent on what the integrative team decides would be best for the patient for them to manage their mental health disorders.  

In “Utah Youth Suicide Study: Barriers to Mental Health Treatment for Adolescents.”, Moskos et al. examine barriers to mental health treatment by interviewing family members and friends of Utah youth who died by suicide. These suicide deaths occurred between June 1996 and November 1998 and included youth 13-21 years of age. Trained professionals conducted the interviews which lasted approximately two hours, and the information from those interviews helped to identify the barriers of health. The top five barriers this study discovered were that the youth believed nothing could help, that seeking help was a sign of weakness, they were reluctant to admit to having problems, they denied having problems, and were too embarrassed to get help (183). This study was published 11 years ago so the information could be slightly dated, as are the references. Due to its date the source would be most useful if paired with similar, more recent sources. By doing so the accuracy can be verified. Despite its date this source was valid for the time it was written.

For people to decide to seek treatment, and prevent them from taking their own lives, society must also be educated. Acceptability is one of the top barriers, and in several studies the top barrier, for people seeking mental health treatment. Education of society will not only help diminish mental health stigma but also help people identify they need help. Most of the barriers noted in “Utah Youth Suicide Study: Barriers to Mental Health Treatment for Adolescents” could have been mitigated by more mental health education in society. By educating society not only will people know when they are experiencing mental health problems, but they will also know where to seek treatment. This education will help to show that seeking treatment for mental health symptoms is just as acceptable and intelligent, as seeking treatment for physical health symptoms. Physical symptoms can be the first signs of mental illness that people perceive which leads to them seeking out the primary care provider. According to DeGruy, “Mental distress, symptoms, and disorders are usually embedded in a matrix of explained or unexplained physical symptoms” (1). By educating not only primary care providers, but society as well, people may be able to better identify when they are experiencing symptoms of mental illness even if they are physical symptoms. This will help decrease the amount of people will unmet mental health needs.

Without better education about mental health problems, not only will the rates of unmet mental health needs increase, but suicide rates will increase as well. Many people who attempt suicide succeed, unlike Maggie. Death by suicide not only affects the person who dies but those around them as well. Close friends and family wonder what they could have done to prevent this unnecessary death. Suicide of a close friend or family member can trigger those around them perpetuating the need for mental health care.

Overcoming the barriers to mental health and preventing unnecessary deaths by suicide starts with education. Mental illness is a real health crisis, and without proper treatment it can be just as debilitating, if not more so, than physical illnesses. Unlike physical illness, there is not enough information about how to treat and care for our mental health. There is also not enough acceptance in society about treating mental illness. With education not only can we more easily identify mental health problems, but we can properly treat them as well. This will help dramatically decrease the amount of unmet mental health needs and increase the number of people receiving treatment like the kind that changed Maggie’s life. 

Bibliography

DeGruy, Frank. “D Mental Health Care in the Primary Care Setting.” Primary Care: America’s Health in a New Era, National Academies Press (US), 1996.

Fikretoglu, Deniz, and Liu, Aihua. “Perceived Barriers to Mental Health Treatment among Individuals with a Past-Year Disorder Onset: Findings from a Canadian Population Health Survey.” Social Psychiatry and Psychiatric Epidemiology, vol. 50, no. 5, 2015, pp. 739–46.

Jones, Emily., et al. “Access to Mental Health Services Among Patients at Health Centers and Factors Associated with Unmet Needs.” Journal of Health Care for the Poor and Underserved, vol. 25, no. 1, 2014, pp. 425–436.

Moskos, Michelle A., et al. “Utah Youth Suicide Study: Barriers to Mental Health Treatment for Adolescents.” Suicide and Life‐Threatening Behavior, vol. 37, no. 2, 2007, pp. 179–186.

Olfson, Mark. “The Rise of Primary Care Physicians in the Provision of US Mental Health Care.” Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, vol. 41, no. 4, 2016, p. 559.

Sickel, Amy E, et al. “Mental Health Stigma Update: A Review of Consequences.” Advances in Mental Health, vol. 12, no. 3, 2014, pp. 202–215..   

Sharp, William, et al. “Mental Health Education: An Evaluation of a Classroom Based Strategy to Modify Help Seeking for Mental Health Problems.” Journal of College Student Development, vol. 47, no. 4, 2006, pp. 419–438.

           

Update

I know it’s been awhile since posted in this blog. As you may remember last year I went back to school in order to pursue a degree in Psychology. I’m on a time crunch to achieve my PhD and become a licensed Psychologist by the time my spouse is retired from the Navy. In order to do this my time and focus need to be on my schooling. This means over the last year I have slowly backed away from my coaching business. Recently I announced I have stopped coaching. Since my spouse moved to Connecticut on military orders I just couldn’t do it all. Even though the kids and I will be moving to Connecticut this summer he will be deploying in 2020 so I will be in the same situation.

Ever since getting a new mental health diagnosis of Bi Polar II on Valentine’s Day, and starting my new medication, I have had time to reevaluate what’s going on in my life. As much as I enjoy coaching it’s not going to help move me closer to my goal especially if I cannot maintain my GPA because of it. Where does leave us? I will still be hosting The Inspired Women Podcast, maintaining The Inspired Women Community Facebook group, doing my Facebook lives every Monday-Friday on my Facebook page, and of course speaking any chance I get. All of those are ways to connect with me and learn what I am learning along with what I already know. I am always willing to share my knowledge and I hope you will continue to stay connected with what I am doing.

Coaching over the last 2 1/2 years has been such a life changer for me. I grew more confident in myself, learned about business, created amazing connections, and was inspired to pursue new goals and dreams. I’ve outgrown it because I want to help women on an even deeper level than I do with coaching. Many women have experienced trauma or childhood programming that has held them back. I want to help them heal and overcome those things so they can be successful… whatever that means to them. Becoming a licensed Psychologist, I believe, is the way to achieving that dream. Plus I find what goes on in our minds fascinating.

I will continue to post in here on occasion. So I hope this doesn’t mean goodbye but I know for some of you it may. Thank you for allowing me to be part of this journey with you.

XoXo

Megan Hall

5 Ways to Practice Body Positivity

Body Positivity, Megan Hall, Life Coach, Motivational Speaker

The body positivity movement has been picking up steam lately. What is the Body Positivity Movement? According to Wikipedia the body positivity movement is “acceptance and appreciation of all human body types. It is a social movement rooted in the belief that all human beings should have a positive body image, and be accepting of their own bodies as well as the bodies of others. The movement sets forth the notion that beauty is a construct of society, and poses that this construct should not infringe upon one’s ability to feel confidence or self-worth.”

Now this is something I can get behind. I have gone from hating my body to loving my body to hating my body to accepting my body. This is the body I have and I know it will never look like the “ideal body” no matter how hard I try. I learned this the hard way when I was running myself ragged trying to achieve that body only 3 years ago. Now I realize it’s perfectly fine to have some fluff and stuff just like Winnie the Pooh.

5 Ways to practice body positivity

1) Focus on the things you do like about your body

2) Stop purchasing magazines and following people on social media that make you feel bad about your body

3) Do things that make you and your body feel good

4) Buy clothes that fit and make you feel good about yourself

5) Don’t shame/judge other women for their bodies

This can be difficult because we are inundated with unrealistic body images. The female body comes in all shapes and sizes. You can be healthy and still be curvy. Also you can be skinny and unhealthy. Body size isn’t necessarily an indicator of health. Take care of your body and embrace all it’s imperfections.

Body shame has no place in our world. A woman should never feel like she isn’t “enough”. Shed yourself of the thoughts, people, and environments that make you feel less than. You don’t need that kind of negativity in your life. Release the expectation of a “perfect body” and love your body for what it can do. Hell my body carried four babies. That to me is absolutely miraculous.

I would love to support you in loving your body. Join me in The Inspired Women Community. If you want to know what I don’t like about the body positivity movement listen to Episode 126 of The Inspired Women Podcast. Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUITFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY, & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

How to Heal From Emotional Hurt

How to Heal From Emotional Hurt, Megan Hall, Life coach, Motivational Speaker

We all experience hurts in our life times. Some hurts are physical and some hurts are emotional. The physical ones are a little easier to heal. We see a professional, they treat us, and if we play our cards right ta da they heal us. Emotional hurt is a little harder to heal. It’s often an invisible wound that we don’t always realize is there.

Many times other people can cause this emotional hurt. People who may not apologize or take ownership of their actions. People who may never give you the opportunity for closure. Even if someone was the cause of our emotional hurt it’s not up to them to heal it. Their apology or ownership of their actions may help but it’s not necessary. Don’t let their hurt effect your life for the rest of your life.

How to heal from emotional hurt

1) Identify the hurt and where it’s coming from

2) Feel and express how you are feeling. This can be to the person who hurt you if possible, a close friend or even a therapist (especially if this is a deep hurt).

3) Decide what steps you need to take to move forward. A therapist can also help with this piece as well. 

4) Create space between you and the person who caused this hurt if they continue to hurt you. Verbal/emotional abuse is real. 

5) Challenge the thoughts that this emotional hurt has caused. Ex: All ______ people are bad. I am not enough. I will never find love. Everyone who is _______ is like this. 

It’s important we don’t let this emotional hurt taint how we feel about a similar group of people. I personally have some emotional hurts from the Christian church. However that does not mean all Christians are bad or are going to hurt me like that. It can be really easy to project our feelings onto others instead of processing through them.

Emotional hurt comes in all shapes and sizes. It can be attached to very traumatic events or something minor. The deeper the hurt the longer it will take to heal. You may even need a professional to help you through the healing process. There is nothing wrong with this! Healing is an important part of our journey.

Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY, & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

5 Signs You Might Want To Break Up With Alcohol

5 Signs You Might Want To Break Up With Alcohol, Megan Hall, Life Coach, Motivational Speaker

My relationship with alcohol started when I was a teenager. Growing up I didn’t have very many if any examples of healthy relationships with alcohol. It was everywhere I went. In my young, impressionable mind this made it seem like alcohol was necessary. Birth… alcohol. Death… alcohol. Sad… alcohol. Happy… alcohol. The only people I saw break up with alcohol were alcoholics.

Alcohol was my liquid courage. Alcohol was my buffer. I didn’t have to deal with my social anxiety or any other feelings for that matter when I was drunk. People seemed to accept me when I was drinking. I finally fit in! As a nerdy introvert this was life. The unfortunate thing as much as much as alcohol seemed to improve my life it had it’s dark side. My relationship with alcohol would sometimes become dangerous and toxic like a bleeding ulcer and a DWI.

5 signs that you might need to break up with alcohol too

1) On more than one occasion you had to apologize for your behavior while drinking. 

2) You have blacked out while drinking…. multiple times.

3) When you drink you drink to get drunk. You don’t stop at one or two drinks.

4) Drinking has caused problems in your relationships with other people.

5) You drink to relieve stress or to numb out emotions. 

This doesn’t necessarily mean you are an alcoholic. You, like me, may be able to go a long time without drinking and may have not feel the need to consume alcohol during that time. You just might have a toxic relationship with alcohol. That may mean like any toxic relationship you have to create some space between you and the other part of the relationship. Alcohol will never change but your relationship with it might. For now it’s probably time for a break.

Personally I know my relationship with alcohol has prevented me from showing up as my best self personally and professionally. A nagging voice in my head (hello higher self) has been saying I need to call it quits. I haven’t set a limit on this so I don’t know if it will be 6 month, 6 years, or forever. This will help me have time and room to grow and heal. It’s my goal to be the best version of me I can be. If that’s your goal too and you resonated with the signs it might be time to take a break. I’m here to support you.

Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

 

 

How to Break the Addiction to Our Phones

How to break our addiction to our phones, Megan Hall, Life coach, Motivational Speaker

One of the biggest places I find my clients struggle to create boundaries is around their phones. It’s so funny because 20 years ago having a mobile phone was a luxury not a necessity. Now everyone seems to have one and most people have a smart phone. That means we are always connected but not always connected to other other people.  We have an addiction to our phones.

Our technology can come between us and the people around us. Even though we have even more access to others we feel lonelier than ever.  Why is that? It’s because even though we are “connected” to the internet we are disconnected from human interactions.  When you go out in public you look around and see people looking at their phones instead of connecting with those around them.

How to break our addiction to our phones

1) Utilize the do not disturb mode function when you should be present with what you are doing. 

2) Set a curfew for your phone. At least 30 minutes before bed I shut my phone down. 

3) Create space between you and your phone. Put it in another room, leave it at home or in the car. 

4) Shut off all the unnecessary notifications on your phone. Do you really need to know Aunt Mary commented under that crazy cat video?

5) Don’t check your phone as soon as you get up in the morning. Instead try creating a morning routine. 

Our phones have created a lot of conveniences for us. Everything is at the tip of our fingers. We can get a hold of people at any point in time. Unfortunately that means they can get a hold of us too. It’s important we take the time to create some really solid boundaries around our technology. It might be uncomfortable at first but over time it will become easier and easier.

If you want more support in this area and many other areas of your life I encourage you to join The Inspired Women Membership Community. Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

5 Things Every Parent Needs To Do

5 Things every parent needs to do, Megan Hall, Life Coach, Motivational Speaker

Let’s be honest parenting is tough. There are so many times I’ve been driving in my car by myself and thought I wonder how far I could get until they realize I’m gone. I know it sounds terrible but whoa it’s a lot of work to be a mom. There is no book that says “This is what every parent needs to do”. That’s because there is no one perfect way to parent but there is a lot of shitty ways to.

I’ve been a mom for over 15 years now. There are so many things I have learned along the way. I also know there are so many more things I need to learn. It is my belief that we are never done learning. Every child, year, and situation will teach us new and fascinating things. My kids are like little experiments… I always wonder what will happen next.

5 things every parent needs to do

1) Listen to your kids. It’s so easy with technology to only half listen or not listen at all but listening is where we pick up on all the things that might be going on. 

2) Teach your kids. Kids learn not by what we say but what we do. If you want kind, empathetic, open minded kids you have to show them that. 

3) Set boundaries with your kids. Just because they are your kids does not mean they own you and your space. 

4) Allow your kids to make up their own mind.  Whether it’s hug Uncle Fred or play the Oboe kids need to learn to trust their own intuition. 

5) Accept your children for who they are. Whether that’s gay, straight, bi, cis gender, trans gender, non gender, gender queer, creative, sporty, nerdy, techy, etc… Just love them for who they are. 

We all are just doing the best we can with what we have available. If you don’t think you are then it’s time to up your game. It’s our jobs as parents to raise our kids to be good human being not little assholes. It’s not our jobs to tell them who they are or need to be. As a kid expectations of me were a tad high and I lost myself trying to meet them. I don’t want that for my kids. I want them to discover their own little personalities and interests.

It’s important that we as parents take the best care of ourselves so we can show up 100% for our kids. It’s also important we teach our kids to care for themselves so when they are older they don’t struggle with self care or boundaries. We are their life teachers and if we want them to be awesome humans we have to be awesome humans. The most personal growth I’ve done has been since becoming a mom. No one expects you to be perfect but do the very best you can.

Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY, & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

 

 

Top 3 Things That Will Help Any Relationship

Top 3 things that will help any relationship, Megan Hall, Life Coach, Motivational Speaker

Relationships can be tough. We are interacting with other imperfect humans who have their own thoughts, feelings, opinions and perceptions. So often the things that will help any relationship are the most are overlooked. We focus on trying to change the person instead of controlling our words and actions.

None of the things I am going to mention in this article are about changing the other person because that is something we cannot do. People have to decide to change on their own. It is however important we treat the people in our lives with respect, empathy, and kindness. Sometimes they are going through something we cannot understand.

Top 3 things that will help any relationship

1) Open and Honest Communication. 

  • Do this when you have calmed down.
  • Express how you are feeling without bashing the other person. I feel _______ because of ______.
  • Be willing to listen openly to what they have to say.

2) Giving as much, if not more, than you take. 

  • It’s not always 50/50 but you should not always be taking more than you give. 

3) Set and Respect Boundaries. 

  • Boundaries involve protecting our physical, mental, and emotional space/energy.
  • Just because someone is a part of your life does not mean they should be able to do what they want with you. Vice Versa is also true. 

Relationships are a two way street. We cannot expect others to do what we are unwilling to do ourselves. You will notice all the things I mentioned involve not just one person doing but both. If you are the only person putting forth an effort consistently it might be time to reevaluate your relationship. Sometimes it’s just a time in your life that this relationship is not serving you the way you need it to.

Relationships are messy. It can be painful when they end. Sometimes that ending is necessary. Other times all it would take is a little effort in the areas mentioned above to help get the relationship back on track. It’s up to you to determine if it’s worth the time and effort.  Just remember you can’t control other people.

If you need more guidance on the topic of relationships check out these articles or The Inspired Women Podcast5 things that could be tearing your relationship apart5 ways to cultivate positive relationships, & What relationships are not. Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

The Perks of Friendship

The perks of friendship, Megan Hall, Life Coach, Motivational speaker

I always say our significant others cannot be all the things to us. That’s a lot of pressure to put on one person. One of the perks of friendship is they don’t have to be. By having several close friends our friends can fulfill some of the emotional support we might need. Although don’t throw your spouse out the door they still have a place.

Quality friendships are imperative to our ability to be our best selves. I know it can be really scary to build and grow friendships. It opens us up to hurt but it also opens us up to love. Some friendships won’t work out. That’s ok because each one will teach us more about ourselves and other people. That’s one of the perks I am talking about.

The perks of friendship:

1) Someone to support you when shit hits the fan

2) Reduction in stress

3) Improved self worth & self confidence

4) Help extend your life. More Here

5) Decreased sense of isolation or lonliness

By building quality friendships we are setting ourselves up for success. Even if life seems to be going great right now without those friendships think about what will happen if adversity strikes. No one wants to think about losing a spouse or family member but who will be there if we do? Our friends will be there

There are many perks of friendship ranging from health to happiness and only a few are listed here. Friendship is so important that I’ve wrote several articles about it: Friendship is like datingWomen need healthy friendships, & 5 ways to cultivate positive relationships. The loneliest and hardest times of my life were when I lacked quality friendships. I deserve quality friendships and you do  too!

Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall

 

How to Handle Big, Scary, Audacious Goals

Big, Scary, Audacious Goals, Megan Hall. Life Coach , Motivational Speaker

I always encourage my clients to set big, scary, audacious goals because those goals can provide a road map for us and fuel for our fire. There are a few drawbacks to these goals though. One of the biggest mistakes I see women make is trying to implement everything all at once. Another one I see women make is not breaking those goals into manageable steps. It can be quite overwhelming when you look at everything you have to do for these goals.

Big, scary, audacious goals are not concrete. They may change over time. Four years ago I wanted to be a PiYo instructor. I discovered along the way that I am not very coordinated and could not keep up with the beat. If I had held fast to that goal and kept trying I would have wasted time and energy that could be spent elsewhere trying to do something that didn’t fit me. Think about your goals as a way to check to see if you are on the right path and to guide you in deciding what steps you should be taking.

How to handle big, scary, audacious goals:

1) Only set a handful of these goals. The more goals you set the less focus you have. 

2) Break these goals down into manageable pieces. What do you have to do daily, weekly, monthly, etc… to reach these goals?

3) Implement one thing at a time. I share more about this in episode 112 of The Inspired Women Podcast

4) Check in with yourself regularly. Are you still on the right path to achieving your goals?

5) If a goal no longer resonates with you feel free to change it. 

If you start to feel stressed out, overwhelmed, or burnout around a goal that’s a sign that things aren’t going right. Perhaps you have implemented too many things. Or perhaps you have too many goals. Maybe you have not broken your goals down into manageable pieces. Whatever it might be it’s time to reevaluate what is going on.

Allow yourself the opportunity to celebrate wins regularly by creating smaller goals. If your goal is to make $100,000 a year in your business don’t focus on that big number instead focus on how much you want to make this week and how to make that happen. Your weekly goals might seem like a drop in the bucket but over time those drops add up. Then before you know it your bucket will be filled.

If you need more guidance on goals check out these articles: I’ve Set My Goals Now What & Didn’t Reach Your Goals. Remember YOU ARE BRAVE, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL, YOU ARE WORTHY, & YOU ARE ENOUGH!!!

XoXo

Megan Hall