As people, we go through a lot and sometimes we are not always together mentally. Some days just feel off, many may be stressful, and others are overwhelmed by anxiety. I want everyone to remember that experiencing that is completely normal. In fact, if you were someone that was constantly happy and only having good days I would be concerned.
“’Positive vibes only’ isn’t a thing. Humans have a wide range of emotions and that’s okay.”
– Molly Bahr
What is not okay is choosing to remain silent. Mental health is something that cannot be fought alone and talking to someone about what you are experiencing is important. This is especially true when it comes to being a part of a team sport. As a coach, it is hard to tell if you are just having an off day as an athlete or if something deeper is happening. I need you to communicate that. More importantly, as a coach, I care about you! As much as we don’t want to admit it, cheer is only a small portion of our life. Eventually you will grow up, have your own family, a career, and deal with life head on and it is important that you are prepared to handle the challenges life will give in a healthy way. Part of realizing that you may need to confide in someone is recognizing the signs – so below, I will list symptoms to be aware of.
Depression & Anxiety:
- You are more irritable or angry over small things or things that never bothered you normally.
- You have a continuous feeling of sadness and hopelessness.
- You are withdrawing socially.
- You have an increase or decrease in appetite, sleep, and/or concentration.
- You are experiencing fatigue and low energy.
- You have a reduced ability to function during normal activities, hobbies, school, etc.
- You have a feeling worthlessness or guilt.
- You are constantly worrying or having negative thoughts/doubting.
- You are feeling tense.
I would like to add that sometimes, there are people that only feel this way when alone. In the hopes that my story helps someone I want to be fully transparent. I was diagnosed with severe depression in college and often times still struggle. I am great at my job and am fine when around other people, but the moment I am alone the world appears different for me – but I make sure to fight that by doing things I love such as talking to family, exercising, going for walks, yoga, etc. If none of those things help, I am not afraid to call my therapist. Mental health is a journey – not a phase – for many and I want you to know that you aren’t alone. If you feel you don’t have anyone to talk to, please know that I am someone you are more than welcome to confide in. Remember that you are loved and, more importantly, you are human!
– Coach Domm