I did my NYSC at Ibadan, and while it is indeed a beautiful state, I sadly admit that I never did enjoy my time there. I felt like an outcast for a couple of reasons, the chief of which was that Yoruba was the dominating language during my stay there. Being unable to speak or understand the language didn’t help my case, and it was frustrating.

I was told it would be an excellent time to learn the language, but I found it hard to cope with my ears being so deaf when it comes to anything other than English. Each time I had the opportunity to go to Lagos or Benin, it felt like I had been let out of my prison cage and could finally breathe again. I was again in familiar territory.

Psychological weariness can be just as suffocating too, and an escape route is all you crave so that you can breathe again. Mental exhaustion feels like your head is full, and you need to unburden. At this point, you need to pause and take a break. Refuse the urge to keep going because you risk overstressing your mental health. You must know when to stop and rest before moving on because rest gives your mind and body the much-desired rest you need to replenish and rejuvenate.

Here are some ways to: 

Stay Positive: It is imperative to keep a positive mind always, irrespective of how low you feel. Keep repeating constructive and encouraging mantras, “It’s going to turn out for the best,” “I am going to be fine,” “It is well,” and “I can and will survive this.” As much as you say them, believe them. You have no idea how much is borne out of positivity and ridding yourself of negative thoughts. It keeps you happy and doesn’t let situations overwhelm you, and it also helps keep stress at bay. No matter how difficult, try to think happy thoughts always.

Listen to music with excellent and positive lyrics: When you are psychologically tired, you are at a stage where you sometimes don’t care much for anything. You feel like “whatever wants to happen should happen.” Such feelings indicate that you are on the verge of giving up at such a point. Your spirit and mind are vulnerable. Hence, it would be best to feed your inner self with spirit-lifting and positive vibes. Calm gospel songs, meditative songs, and motivating songs are good because though you may think you are not listening, the lyrics of the songs penetrate your subconscious. Remember, you are what you think.

Avoid blaming yourself for issues beyond your control: You are only responsible for your actions. Don’t subject yourself to the unnecessary torture of blame. If it’s not your fault, then it isn’t your fault. Please don’t make it yours. Taking responsibility is superfluous, and it doesn’t make you a hero or martyr. One day, you will snap, especially when you have taken so much blame for things you never did. Stop hurting your psyche in that way.

Keep healthy relationships: It’s better to have one good friend that helps improve your life than to be surrounded by friends who have no idea who you are, let alone how to guide you to achieving your life’s purpose. Develop and keep good friendships that help you become a better you. Healthy relationships serve as channels through which you can express your thoughts. Feeling caged in a relationship or friendship is just as unhealthy and toxic for your mental state as your emotional and physical being. You owe no one anything. Cut the strings if the friendships or relationships don’t give you happiness and joy. Suppose the friendships don’t feel good in themselves, severe the ties. Life is too short to be unhappy. Be free and be happy. You owe that much to yourself.

Remember, it is your sole responsibility to take care of yourself. I mean all aspects of your life, especially your mental health because once you are mentally happy, other parts of you will be satisfied.

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