Posted by Mary
Lately I have been feeling overwhelmed by the amount of responsibility I have gotten myself into. I have a full-time government communications job, I have several freelance clients through my company, Whisker Media and I write this blog, which is really another part-time job. I love being busy and have an obsession of doing as much as I can, especially things I am passionate about. But one night this week I felt like I was having a breakdown. I felt hopeless because I had so much to do and couldn't focus on anything. I hadn't gotten much sleep in the nights before, was eating crappy and it was becoming just too much.
My mind was mush so I decided to take a break. Josie and Farley Waddlesworth were in the bedroom sleeping together as they often do. I decided to lay down with them and started petting their heads. It was so relaxing and calming. I layed there for about an hour and decided it was so nice there was no reason to worry about my tasks at hand. My to-do list could wait until the next day. Soon I drifted off to sleep with both of them and before I knew it, it was 7 a.m.
When I woke up, I felt refreshed and ready to go. My panic attack from the night before had lifted. I really credit the calming influence of my animals with helping me to relax and think clearly. Everyone in my family has mental health issues... ranging from depression to anxiety and obsessing about really stupid things. It's not serious enough where it's debilitating but enough to where it is really annoying. While some of my family takes medication, I much prefer pet therapy. There's nothing like a little Farley and Josie to get you through the tough times.
A recent study in a European psychiatric medical journal has provided evidence that pets really do help those who suffer from mild or severe mental illness.The authors of the study showed animals were key in helping people suffering from mental disabilities. They believe our furry friends help us by:
- Forcing us into routines
- Giving us a sense of control and security
- Providing distractions
- Making us exercise
- Not making us feel shamed that we have a mental illness