PREVIOUS: Disorders #1
IMAGE from: The Truman College Wellness Center
SITE: Psychological Disorders: PowerPoints with Video Links & Lecture Notes (To purchase. Aimed at teachers)
LEVELS of Mental Health
The hierarchy of mental states, from highest to lowest functioning, is:
1. Healthy —-> 2. Neurotic —-> 3. Personality Disordered —->
4. Sociopathic/Psychopathic —-> 5. Psychotic (deranged)
1. NORMAL (Healthy)
DEF: Mental health is a state of emotional & psychological well-being based on realizing & developing ones potential, with the ability to cope with normal life stressors, to work productively & fruitfully, & contribute to ones community. This comes from the True Self.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mental health includes : Autonomy, competence, inter-generational dependence, perceived self-efficacy, self-actualization of one’s intellectual and emotional potential…… & subjective well-being, which comes from acting on their abilities, coping with normal life-stressors, productive work & contribution to their community.
HOWEVER: People with long-term, stable mental health are in the minority. Several long-term studies – in the US, Switzerland & New Zealand – (covering a span of 27 yrs, during ages 11 to 38) found that up to 83% of participants developed mental disorders sometime during those ages.
Re. the continually health people: while having loving, drama-free childhoods helped, these people were (born) naturally up-beat (emotionally not moody), had lots of friends & had superior self-control.
As adults, they reported more education, better jobs, higher-quality relationships & more satisfaction with their lives.
Also, in New Zealand, the healthiest Kiwis had fewer first- & second-degree relatives with mental disorders. (More….)
• Basically – mental health is about knowing who you are – the very essence of you (not just your damage expressed as self-hate) but rather the person you were born as, called the True Self, found in the Natural Child.
• It’s being comfortable in your own skin, even when things aren’t going well or you’re experiencing great difficulties (More….)
• It’s having access to all emotions (not all at once ):), knowing how to comfort yourself when in any kind of pain, AND being able to enjoy all the good things about yourself & your life
• It’s knowing what your talents are & using them to your best ability, learning what you don’t know & using all your imagination to express your ideas
• It’s having strong, clear boundaries (not walls) so you can have safe relationships which can be loving, interesting &/or fun
• It’s knowing what your limitations are, based on your natural personality, you experiences & your age. Accepting that you are imperfect & not all-powerful, both as a human being & as your unique self. It’s ACCEPTING this & being OK with it
• It’s being curious about yourself, other people & the world, always looking for new ways to grow & stay interested in life
💕 Healthier people can tolerate a wider, deeper range of emotion, so don’t have a compulsive need for distractions (alcohol, sugar, internet surfing, sex, doing / doing….). Being more honestly self-aware allows them to feel:
😟 the pain of their own human failings, limitations & eventual mortality, and
😍 the beauty of everyday living – precious moments with loved ones, appreciating delicate flowers, a kind word from someone, time spent with a pet or listening to favorite music….
‼as well as the high points, like weddings, births, promotions, personal milestones, artistic accomplishments….(SITE: Children’s Mental Health 2–8)
Theresa Lowry-Lehnen, Health Psychology lecturer, writes:
“Emotional stability refers to the level of control a person has over their own emotions. A healthy personality does not have unreasonable & unwanted negative thoughts & feelings towards others, nor indulges in self-loathing. They can be spontaneous but not impulsive, can make rational, well-judged decisions, & are able to protect their health, self-esteem & well-being – despite any problems in their life.”
Using the criterion of personality organization, Dr. Otto Kernberg marks 3 degrees of dysfunctional severity: Neurotic, Borderline & Psychotic states. The more mentally & emotionally disorganized, the worse the person’s functioning.
To assess this, Kernberg suggests evaluating answers to 3 Qs:
1) Is your reality-testing intact? (Explanations)
2) Do you have an integrated sense of self & others?
3) What is the maturity level of your defenses?
CHAT BOT – talk to computer re. moods (Woebot on Facebook Messenger)
NEXT: Disorders #2b