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How To Deal With Your Job When You Have Mentall Illness

Aug 29, 2008
We all know that the bills don't stop even when you become ill. That includes mental illness. No matter what we are dealing with in life, we still have to work to pay our bills. The good thing is that mental illnesses rarely incapacitate you physically from doing your job. There are a lot of things you can do to give yourself the emotional and mental capabilities to continue working while you are dealing with your illness as well.
Keep things orderly.

Having too many things to do at once can cause a lot of stress and aggravate mental illness. Break down tasks into small, easily handled projects.
Delegate responsibility if you can.

If you are in a position to accept other's help on projects, do it. Shouldering too much responsibility can make things more difficult for you. It is not necessary to accomplish everything by yourself. You are only human.
Stay positive.

It is easy to have a negative outlook on things. No matter what the issue is, if it is personal, or work related, look at things in a positive way and always try to find the good or even humorous side of a situation. The saying 'laughter is the best medicine' was invented for just that reason. You have to be able to laugh at circumstances. It helps all of us get through the days.

Know who you are
As simple as that sounds, it is an important aspect of dealing with mental illness, especially in the face of what others may think. You know who you are. Have confidence in your abilities, and who you are as a person and others will pick up on that and see you for who you are, not for your illness, too.

Know that you are human
Everyone has bad days, and everyone has something to deal with physically or emotionally. The problems you face on account of your illness may make you feel like you are different, that can lead to a desire to isolate yourself from the world. It just isn't true. You are not different. You have a disease, and that disease causes a lot of problems for you but most people have problems of one sort or another. So that just makes you human.

Some of the symptoms of mental illness are just exaggerated forms of what everybody faces daily. If you give yourself the allowance to be human, and know that these are genuine human concerns, you will be able to feel better about yourself. That will give you the ability to cope with situations your illness brings on, and handle them better.

Evaluate situations
When you are put in a position at work to do a job you feel is beyond your scope. Don't be afraid to say so. Putting yourself under too much pressure to succeed in a task will only lead to frustration and heightened symptoms. Asking for help in completing a project will make sure it is accomplished and you can feel good about having handled it.

Remember that others will treat you the way you expect to be treated. They will see you as you see yourself. If you need to, tell yourself in the mirror every morning that you are a good person. You deserve to be treated well, and with respect as a fellow human being. Most important, tell yourself you can handle what comes your way. Give yourself the pep talk you need to walk out and face the day and all of the challenges with resolve, and don't forget the sense of humor.
About the Author
Ronen David is the chairman of "Malam" (an Israeli organization supporting and representing those dealing with mental disabilities). He is the author of the "How to Cope With Psychosis & Schizophrenia Self Help Handbook".
Visit his web site and learn Dealing With Mental Illness
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