ARTICLES AND RESEARCH | MHA

ARTICLES AND RESEARCH

Posted by & filed under Uncategorized. By: Stan Popovich

As an author of a managing fear book, I have struggled with fear and anxiety for over 20 years. There were some weeks I really struggled in doing my daily routines. As an animal lover, I also have some pets and I always worried what would happen to my pets if my mental health got the best of me.  Here are some ways to take care of your pets when you have trouble getting through the week due to your fears, anxieties, depression, and other mental health issues.

During my anxious times, I realized that I needed to focus on doing only the most important things in taking care of my pets. I made sure that I would be able to feed my pets, give them plenty of water, and provide a safe living environment. As long as I could do that, then my pets would be ok. When I got back on my feet, I would go back to my normal routine.

Sometimes, I would ask my relatives or closest friends  for some help in taking care of my pets. They knew I struggled with my fears and they were more than willing to help me for a few days until I got back on my feet.

I couldn’t bother my friends and relatives on a regular basis so I made some preparations on hiring a pet sitter in case my fears had the best of me. I did some research and got a list of people who I could call. When my anxiety would interfere with my life,  I always had  a list of pet sitters I could call If I really needed them.

I also talked to my pet’s veterinarian on other ways to take care of my pets while I struggled with my fears. My pet’s veterinarian provided me with other helpful suggestions that I could take advantage of in case I had trouble taking care of my pets and mental health issues.

I also came up with one important fact about my pets and mental health. If you know you struggle with certain mental health issues, don’t wait until the last minute to figure out how to take care of your pets.

I realized that now is the time to plan ahead for my pets’ needs in case my mental health issues got the best of me.

Many people who struggle with their mental health sometimes forget or do know what to do in taking care of their pets when they become incapacitated due to anxiety, fear, and depression. Don’t wait until its too late to make sure your pets are taken care of when it comes to dealing with your mental health.

Posted by & filed under UncategorizedBy: Stan Popovich

Taking Exams at Penn State was the toughest part at being at Penn State. Each exam was %35 worth your final grade at the end of the semester. This means that if you messed up on one exam you would be lucky if you passed the entire class. If you failed the class, then you would have to retake the entire class again next semester. In addition, there was no such thing as an easy class at Penn State.Before each major exam, I would worry about If I would be able to pass my exams. My mind would get overwhelmed with fearful thoughts which created more fear and worry which in turned created more fearful thoughts and worry. I was caught up in this vicious cycle of worry and fear which made things even more difficult and scary.  I had to do something.The first thing I did was to learn to take one day at a time. Instead of worrying about next week, I would take each day one at a time. Secondly, I made it a habit to exercise more because exercise would get rid of my negative thoughts and help me to think more clearly. I got in the habit of talking to God about my fears and worries. Using the help of God was a great help. Instead of studying my brains out, I made it a habit to spend some more time with my friends. Doing social activities with my friends was a great stress releaser during exam week.

I also talked to a mental health professional about my fears and she  gave me different ideas on how to cope. I also focused on the facts of my current situation. I reasoned that all I could do was my best and if I failed, then I would learn from my mistakes and it would not be the end of the world. The worst case scenario would be to transfer to another school in my area which wasn’t as difficult. Having a plan helped me to relax. Before each exam I would take deep breathes.  It was very tough but I passed all my classes  and I eventually graduated a few years later.

We all get into that vicious cycling of worrying where you get overwhelmed with worrying and fearful thoughts. This creates more panic and worry and eventually you can’t function because you are a basket case. If you are in this situation try to use the same techniques I did when I was at Penn State. Those techniques I used can be used in any situation that gets us worked up with worry and fear. If you can manage your thoughts, you will stop this viscous cycle of worry. Most importantly use the services of a professional to give you additional advice.

 

Posted by & filed under UncategorizedBy: Stan Popovich

I struggled with fear, anxiety, and stress for over 20 years. There were many times  I felt like giving up because my fears and anxieties were stronger than what I could handle. It was difficult getting through a normal day and there were times I thought I was not going to make it. During those times, I could have been tempted to turn to alcohol and drugs to take away my fears but deep down inside of me I knew that was not the answer.

The main reason why I didn’t to alcohol and drugs to solve my problems was that they did not really do anything to take away my fears in the long term.  I realized that alcohol and drugs would the numb the pain for a few hours, but then my fears and anxieties would come back.  I also knew  that Alcohol and drugs are very addictive and can be very difficult to stop. I figured I had enough problems let alone trying to deal with the vicious cycle of addiction.

I also learned that I couldn’t run away from my fears and anxieties. No matter what I did, my fears and anxieties would always come back and there was no way to escape my fears. Running  away  or avoiding my problems through alcohol and drugs was not the answer to my problems.  With this in mind, I determined my best course of action was to learn how to deal with my fears and anxieties in an effective manner. I reason that If I could learn how to manage my fears then I would be better off in the long run.

So I talked to various mental health counselors and read many books. I made it a habit to try to learn from my experiences. Every time I experienced a fearful situation I would try various techniques. Whenever the fears went away, I wrote down what worked for me and what didn’t work in terms of managing my fears.  Instead of running away from my fears, I used each situation as a learning experience so I would be better able to deal with my fears in the future.  I also asked God for help in managing my fears on a regular basis. Using the help of  God is way more effective than using alcohol and drugs to take away  a person’s fears. I also made it a point to surround myself with supportive people who gave me helpful advice and encouragement.

It was not easy, however I continued to seek help and I didn’t give up. In my opinion, getting the help you need and learning how to deal with your situation in an effective manner are the best ways in getting better.  Using Drugs and alcohol to take away your fears and anxieties will only make  things worse.

Posted by & filed under UncategorizedBy: Stan Popovich

Throughout my 20 years of personal experience in dealing with fear and anxiety, I  had a challenging time in getting my friends to understand my  issues with fear, stress, and anxiety.

Most of my friends and relatives were understanding and very supportive of the fact that I struggled with fear and anxiety,  however, there were times some of my friends were not very supportive. The problem was that some of these people got on my case and did not understand my situation.  In order to deal with these people, I  did the following.

The first thing I did was to listen to the mental health professionals and not my friends. My friends meant well but I realized that the professionals  knew my situation since they were trained in the mental health fields. These professionals knew what I was going through and were properly trained. So I made the choice to listen to them and follow their advice and not my friends.

I also realized that my goal was to overcome my fearful situations and not to please my friends. I realized that I wasn’t going to waste my time arguing with my friends who were giving me a difficult time.  I realized that this was not a public relations event where I needed to get everyone’s approval.  This was my life and my focus was to find the ways to manage my fears.

I told my friends that  the best way for them to help me was to learn more about my situation and to be more understanding.  I suggested they could talk to a mental health professional, read some good books, or attend a support group where they  could learn about my situation.  This would give them some idea of what I was going through and hopefully would become more supportive. I also asked some of these mental health professionals on ideas on how to deal with people who were giving me a difficult time.

Some of my friends took my advice and others didn’t do anything . I eventually made the  decision to distance myself from people who gave me a difficult time. This seemed cruel however I realized that if I had friends  who were hindering my progress in getting better that it was better if they stayed  away from me and go bother someone else. As a result,  I distanced myself from those people who wouldn’t  make an effort to help understand what I was going through. I surrounded myself  with positive and supportive people.

It can be difficult dealing with people who get on your case and who do not support you.  Many of these people think they know what is best for you, but the fact of the matter is that their advice could make things even worse. I had one friend who thought he knew everything, but the fact of the matter was that he didn’t have a clue and he gave me bad advice.  Always listen and follow the advice of a mental health professional and not your friends.

I made the decision that I wanted to overcome my fearful issues and that it was not my job to get everyone’s approval. No matter what you do in life, there will always be people who will not agree with you. I realized  that my mental health was more important than  pleasing people who were close minded and stubborn.   My advice is not to waste your time and energy on these  people.

 

Posted by & filed under UncategorizedBy: Stan Popovich

As a person who has dealt with fear, anxiety, and stress for over 20 years, the number one  thing I learned was to not take my mental health issues for granted and to get help.

When I first started dealing with my fear and anxieties, I thought that it was just a phase and that it would go away. I was wrong. My fears and anxieties would come and go on a semi-regular basis and it started to be a major factor in my life.

I knew of people who had similar issues of fear, anxiety, depression, and addiction who didn’t get help for their mental health issues and their fears made their life a living hell. Some people I knew cried a lot, couldn’t hold a job and became homeless, became very distant and nonresponsive, had their marriages and careers ruined, and families destroyed. Many of them ended their lives because the pain was so unbearable.

I was determined to get help and educate myself on how to deal with my fears and anxieties. This helped a lot but I still struggled. The worst part of dealing with fear is waking up every day and having to go through your mental health issues every waking moment. Your fears and anxiety are with you every single minute of every single day. A person can only sleep so much, however the fear is so overpowering that a person just becomes a total wreck and can’t function at all.

It was also very heart wrenching to go to support groups and see the despair of family members as they watch their loved one suffer this pain and are totally powerless to do anything about it. Some family members talked about the grief they suffer to this day because their loved ones ended their life.

There were times I felt like giving up, but I knew in my heart that the answers to my fears were out their but I had to make the effort to find those answers. Nobody was going to do it for me. I realized that denying I had a problem or using drugs and alcohol to take away my fears and anxieties would only make things worse in the long run. I had to make a choice.

I was determined to find those techniques that would  help manage my fears. I  took advantage of the professional help that was available, I  read many books, and I  Learned what worked, what didn’t work, and what I needed to do to improve my issues. I made it a habit to learn from each stressful situation that I encountered and I would write down what I learned in my notebook so I wouldn’t forget what I learned.  I refused to give up and realized that the more I learned the better of I would be in the long run. I had to help myself and nobody could do it for me. This was my life and I had to make a choice.

To this day I still know of people who ended their life because they didn’t get the help they needed or were too afraid to get help. I see the grief of family members who lost loved ones or who have loved one who are caught up in the vicious cycle of fear, anxiety, addiction, and other mental health issues.

I know this pain all too well as someone who has dealt with these issues on a personal level. Do not make excuses and don’t let fear stop you from getting better. Most importantly, do not wait until its too late.

Posted by & filed under UncategorizedBy: Stan Popovich

I was eighteen and I was going to the main campus at Penn State to start college. I really wanted to go to Penn State however the odds of me succeeding Were against me. First, I knew that it was very hard for a freshman to pass all of their classes when they went to the main campus. I was smart but I wasn’t super smart like my friends who got A’s all the time. This was also my first time away from home for more than a week. I was very close to my family and I knew that I would struggle with being home sick.

The odds of me succeeding were against me but something deep down inside told me that I had to give it my best shot. If I was going to fail, then I would have to give it my best.

The first week I was at Penn State was tough but somehow I got by. My classes were really difficult and making friends was difficult. I also missed my family. A month into my first semester, I felt ok however my fears and anxieties struck. If anyone experienced a lot of panic attacks, then you have an idea of how I felt. It was unbearable. I determined that I would go to the local church to pray everyday before my classes. I also did a lot of exercise and spent some time with my friends which helped a lot. I also talked to a counselor and took it one day at a time.

There were times that my issues were unbearable but I had this feeling in the pit of my stomach that if I did not make it, I would let a lot people down. I don’t know what that was all about, but I had this feeling. I hung in their.

In time I became better at dealing with my fears and anxieties. I was at Penn State for 5 years. My friends were very smart and they would study the night before and get A’s. I would study a week before and was happy I could just pass. My fears and anxieties would come go every semester. There were no such thing as an easy class and my mental health and fears made each semester a challenge. I did a lot of praying when I was at Penn State.

By some miracle I graduated from Penn State. I continued to deal with my fears and anxieties. I realized that I would always struggle with these things. A couple of years after I graduated from Penn State I decided to write a book based on the techniques I used to manage my fears and anxieties. Today, my book has helped thousands of people and my book and free articles on my website has been read from all over the world. I also have been on TV and the Radio and published in many magazines.

I also have more than 20 years experience in dealing with fear and anxiety.

I never discuss my fearful problems to my friends and people who know me. I try to live a regular life. My struggles will never go away. I am thankful that I can get by. I know many people who haven’t. I don’t look for sympathy. I focus on getting by than trying to please my friends.

One friend once made a comment to me that “I Have It Easy In Life” . If only they knew.