Donovan Mckenzie

Men Don’t Cry

From a very young age, phrases like “big boys don’t cry” and “be a man” are thrown around a tender young boy. Even as he grows up and faces the brunt of the world and sheds tears for the same, society deems him vulnerable, weak and does not pay heed to his emotions. It has been firmly etched in our minds that a masculine man does not cry because Society measures manhood on a man’s ability to pick fights and lift weights. A man has to stop his inner turmoil through a rigid face, he is not allowed to express his emotion or look for comfort. His pain cannot be shed or showed but a man who cries is a rebel. He is not shackled by society’s norms and its judgments but he is brave to open his heart and… Read More »Men Don’t Cry

PTSD

PTSD in Losing a Loved One

Human beings are essentially social beings, and we form a number of relationships with our loved ones through the course of our life. The bond we share with our loved ones is extremely special, and plays a huge role in defining and shaping us as functioning adults. However, the sudden tragic loss of a loved one can leave us feeling saddened and depressed. Since sadness is such a natural outcome of a loss as huge as this, we might not always associate it with PTSD. PTSD is defined as – “A trauma experienced by someone who has experiences, witnessed or been confronted with something terrible”. News of someone very close to us passing away suddenly, can cause a series of heightened emotions, and can manifold and magnify the negative emotions we are feeling, since it catches us completely off guard.… Read More »PTSD in Losing a Loved One

Let's Talk About Depression

Let’s Talk About Depression

There’s an elephant in the room, but it feels more like a fire-breathing dragon. People are dying from the mental illness known as depression every day around the world, and yet those who suffer from it feel afraid to speak their minds. There’s a stigma attached to depression that we need to destroy, because it’s making sick people feel like they’re somehow lesser when they’re really just unwell. Have You Been Diagnosed with Depression? I don’t mean to minimize anyone’s feelings or tell you what to do, but if you feel like you’re depressed and haven’t been diagnosed you really should talk to a doctor or psychiatrist about it. There are a lot of simple lifestyle changes they can help you make that can have a positive impact, from taking medication to exercising to getting out in your social circle… Read More »Let’s Talk About Depression

Mindfulness and Meditation

Mindfulness and Meditation: Keeping an Even Keel

A long, hard day at work leaves you feeling grumpy and self-indulgent. An argument with a close friend or family member makes you angry and irritable. Unforgiving life circumstances force you into depression.  Or do they?  While the scenarios listed above may seem automatic, the truth is that external circumstances do not create our emotions. We do that ourselves, and we can change the way we do it through mindfulness and meditation.  As a matter of fact, mindfulness and meditation can keep us safe from the horrors of certain mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression. It takes a lot of hard work, but cultivating a mindful life is worth every drop of sweat and tears.  Being mindful of yourself, your surroundings, and others means maintaining a certain baseline awareness of the reality that surrounds you. It means keeping a… Read More »Mindfulness and Meditation: Keeping an Even Keel

Mind Battles

Mind Battles

Today is a bad day. It is the lowest you have felt and you didn’t even think it was possible to feel so down. You’re trying to turn the day around but nothing is working. Exercising, working, reading or relaxing – it’s not doing anything and you just feel numb. In times like these it is incredibly easy to give up. This lethargic cloud doesn’t seem like it will clear anytime soon and you’re forever stuck in the fog with no clear path out. It’s easy for someone to say “Chin up, things will get better.” – But do you really believe it? When you feel lost and helpless; hope is the one thing you’re looking for, but life has seemed to run out of stock on “Hope”. Sometimes there only seems to be one solution; you may not have… Read More »Mind Battles

Male Vulnerability

MALE VULNERABILITY

Before beginning your journey into mental health and recovery, it’s important to understand that everyone has two voices in their heads: The Healthy Voice and The Unhealthy Voice. Your healthy voice is the one that acknowledges when there’s an issue and encourages you to do something about it. Your unhealthy voice is the one that also acknowledges when there’s an issue but convinces you that you can’t do anything about it or minimizes the impact of whatever is at hand. Your unhealthy voice knows exactly what to say to you in order to deprive yourself from getting better. For most men, the unhealthy voice in their heads is one placed on them by society whilst growing up. That voice may say things like: “Boys don’t cry” “Don’t be such a wimp” “You’re being so sensitive” “Man Up” “Don’t be so… Read More »MALE VULNERABILITY