How to Make Good Decisions When You’re in a Mental Health Slump

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A roller coaster ride usually has its highs and lows. Some highs get your blood pumping, adrenaline running, and excitement overflowing while the lows can make your stomach drop and a chill run through your bones. The main reason is that you hit a low. This analogy best describes your mental health journey and sometimes you’re in the dip longer than you’re at the peak. It’s OK. It’s all part of the process. Even though you hit that low, decisions still have to be made in your day-to-day life, and for the most part, you lack the energy and zeal to make them. Here are five ways you can ensure the best possible outcome when you need to make a decision while you're in a mental health slump.

1. Avoid being impulsive when you're in a mental health slump.

Being in that state sometimes can cloud your judgment and you fail to see things clearly. Making some decisions on the spot, therefore, can lead to dire consequences. Take it one step at a time. First, acknowledge that there is a matter at hand that requires your attention and possibly a conclusion in the form of an answer. After acknowledging, think it through. Practice mindfulness to clear your mind. Since your mental health is taking a hit, take a day or two to do this. Start creating scenarios in your head about the possible outcomes for each decision you make. Then settle for what you think would be best after sitting on the matter until you’re ready.

But what if the situation is a pressing one and you need to make the decision right away?

2. Get second and third opinions from people you trust who understand your struggles.

Finding a second and third opinion can help you through this. It might be your spouse, parents, guardian, therapist, sibling, close friend, or grown children. People who are familiar with your mental health journey understand you. Not everyone is suitable for this as some might think differently from you and the route they’d take would be the opposite of the one you would have taken. This would leave you in a dilemma. Choose your counsel wisely. Familiarity and wisdom are key. The person should great sense of character and truly care. Someone loving and understanding yet just at the same time. Avoid people who only tell you what you’d like to hear as that might lead to more problems than solutions. Let them be frank with you and walk you through the process.

3. Don’t make decisions based on what you feel at the moment; think things through.

As stated earlier, going through a slump can cloud your judgment, which in turn affects your decision-making. This means that you need to decide using reason, not emotion. Taking this route will ensure that the decision you make works best for you and doesn’t harm you in the long run. If it becomes overwhelming, which is understandable, don’t be afraid to make contact with a person you can rely on. Even when helped, avoid making the final decision based on feelings unless it’s intuition.

4. Unless you're sure, avoid making the decision while you're in a slump.

If, after following all the tips stated above, there is still some uncertainty, don’t make the decision. You don't want your choices to be reckless or have a negative outcome. This is where an accountability partner comes in. Your accountability partner should be able to make some decisions for you when you completely hit the wall. Your spouse, close parent, best friend, sibling, or therapist are best. These are people who have stayed with you, known you, and want the best for you, so, they will only choose what they think is the best outcome for you. Whoever you pick, ensure that you’re comfortable with them and that they are well-updated as far as your life matters are concerned. This will also enable them to make sound decisions as they are well aware of your situation. Always make sure that even though you have given them the liberty of making the decisions for you, they need to update you on the direction they’re taking and the decisions they are considering so you are not left in the dark. Some decisions may be painful, but if they’re to help you in the long run, allow them to as they only want the best for you.

5. Always remember that the priority is for you to prioritize your mental health and get better. The rest can come later.

Avoid pressuring yourself. Yes, decisions have to be made but not at the expense of your well-being. Don’t focus so much on the matters at hand that you make things worse for yourself. The prime focus should be on getting you to a stable place where you can stand on your own two feet again. Always remember to keep your loved ones close, not only for your betterment but also for moments when you might need someone to carry you through some of the difficult choices to be made. That way life will move on. Don’t give up yet; keep hanging in there. You don’t have to accomplish much, but as long as you’re breathing, you’re doing a great job. Just getting out of bed is progress. Hopefully one of the tips written above will prove useful to you during that state.

Just keep pushing. You’re doing great.


Photo by Caique Nascimento on Pexels

I am currently a student at The Writer's Bureau. I was diagnosed with Major Depressive Disorder back in 2020 and have been on antidepressants since. Working on my mental health has been quite an arduous journey, but there has been a lot of improvement.

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