More from Mental Health Warrior Cliff Bauman, worth a read!

Below is his article from RallyPoint or click on this link: https://www.rallypoint.com/command-post/i-have-ptsd-and-mental-health-is...

"I have PTSD and Mental Health Issues “So What”

Everyone at some point in their life goes through struggles that will impact their mental health, it’s inevitable. Although some will have harder battles than others, it’s a shared experience across the board. I am not immune to this shared experience. When I was dealing with my own mental health struggles, the hardest thing for me was admitting to myself “it’s okay to not be okay”
I refused to admit this truth, even to myself, for a long time. I convinced myself that asking for help was a sign of weakness and that I was a soldier. Of course it is easy for me to say now that asking for help is actually a sign of strength and resiliency. However, prior to my suicide attempt, I kept the shame inside me letting it slowly eat away at my resilience. If you have read my past postings you know my story (https://rly.pt/3vqd9oV , I felt it was important to talk about things I do to keep my PTSD in check when my day suddenly turns wrong and things seem lost again.
There are many facets of life, but the ones that I focus on to continue my healing journey are physical, mental and random (yes, there are many things I do to help that don’t fall into any specific category which I don’t think is talked about enough!) The next three days I will be posting an article on each component of health that has helped me stay on my recovery track. Please remember, everyone is different and everyone’s healing looks different. You may need to focus more on your emotional health while others need to focus on their physical health. It is all about having a balanced plan and reliable techniques that while ultimately help you achieve overall health. It is an everyday battle for me, but one that I will continue to fight. I hope this helps keep folks in their path or encourages them to start. Be kind to yourself and know that you are worth the fight.
If you or someone you know is struggling, please get help now. Tell a loved one. Tell a friend. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 800-273-8255. If you prefer to talk online, visit the veteran crisis line here: https://www.veteranscrisisline.net/get-help/military-crisis-line

Something the majority of us probably have in common is the fact that we all know the importance of physical health. We have been through what may seem like hell and back during our training, regardless of what branch you were in, and have held what seems like a million minutes in planks. Once you come home, retire, or are just physically away from other military members, sometimes it is easy to lose the motivation to keep your body moving. Exercise releases endorphins, and when you go from moving non-stop for a certain amount of time to becoming stagnant or working a desk job, it truly has an impact on not only your body but your mind too.

Remember, like I said yesterday, everyone is different and everyone’s battles and recoveries look different, this is what worked for me! Plus, physical activity, whether it is walking around the block or doing an intense lift, will never hurt.

I believe that exercise helps me refocus my thinking and helps me to physically feel better. I have injuries that permit me from working out like I used to but I have learned to work around them because being active is a priority in my life. My workouts usually consist of cardio 3x a week (running, walking or elliptical) this really depends on my pain level and how much I can do of each. An important thing to note here is to listen to your body; pushing yourself is great but don’t push yourself to the point of an injury where you’ll have to be on the couch for 6 weeks! On the off days of cardio, I lift weights. I normally lift 3x a week but like most things in life, it varies. Some weeks I get all 6 workouts in and some weeks I can only do 2; and that is okay! Having a schedule is extremely beneficial as it helps keep you on track, but having wiggle room is even more important. Being too rigid will likely deter you from actually wanting to workout, which is half the battle.

Lately, I have been walking the dog after dinner with my 6 year old boy, Lloyd. He enjoys it and the other day he completed a 5K which he was so excited about. Something I always tell people about working out: something is better than nothing. Working out and physical activity is subjective; do what makes you feel good. Maybe use it as a time to blast your favorite music and lift heavy, or use the time to go on a leisurely walk and call an old friend.Physical health plays an important role in my mental health, if you’re struggling maybe it will help you too!

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